The Common Good

HKS Panel Encourages Religion in the Public Sphere

Date: April 9, 2013

Christian author Jim Wallis and Memorial Church Minister Jonathan L. Walton argued that the public should harness the power of religion to pursue the “common good” in politics on Monday in an event hosted by the Harvard Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership.

The panel, entitled “Religion in the Public Square,” jumped between topics included in Wallis’s latest book “On God’s Side.” Moderated by the Center for Public Leadership Director David R. Gergen, most of the discussion revolved around using religion to achieve social justice.

“The book talks about how we might apply this notion of the common good,” Wallis said. “How do we make choices that really can impact the common good?”

Wallis, who is editor-in-chief of Sojourners magazine, brought up immigration reform as a current hot-button issue that reveals the significance of this idea of “the common good.”