Sunday, November 9, 2008

A PRAYER & A PLEDGE FOR REAL CHANGE
Sojourners offers a sign-on letter to President-elect Barack Obama

FIRST THINGS FIRST. On November 5, Jim Wallis and Sojourners drafted the following letter and is inviting citizens to sign on as it is submitted to President-elect Barack Obama. I have signed it and recommend those who read Bikehiker consider the invitation. I appreciate the spirit and content of it. It is an attempt to hold our new President and his Administration accountable on issues of serious concern to many Christians. It is a way to make ourselves accountable for our words and actions, too. This is one way to exercise concerned citizenship for the days ahead.


Dear Mr. President-elect Obama:

I want personally to offer you my prayers as you embark on the enormous challenge of leading our country in a time of great crisis and crossroads. While our ultimate hope is our faith in God, we also have high hopes for your administration.

I am one member of a growing movement of Christians and people of faith who support a broad moral agenda that includes a deep concern for poverty, peacemaking, a consistent ethic of life, and care for creation. During the campaign, you said that, if elected, you would face powerful special interests trying to block change. You said you would need a citizen movement to support and push you.

Today, I am pledging to be part of that movement. It will be a movement that will both pray for you and hold you accountable to the things you promised. So I urge you to give high priority to:

1. Overcome poverty, both here in our rich nation and globally. Your efforts to resolve the economic crisis must include those at the bottom, the poorest among us. You pledged during the campaign to mobilize the nation to cut domestic poverty in half in ten years and to implement the Millennium Development Goals to cut extreme global poverty in half.

2. Find better ways than war to resolve the inevitable conflicts in the world. It is time to end the war in Iraq and emphasize diplomacy over military action in resolving problems in Iran and Afghanistan. We need better and smarter foreign policy that is more consistent with our best national values.

3. Promote a consistent ethic of life that addresses all threats to life and dignity. We must end genocide in Darfur, the use of torture, and the death penalty. I urge you to pursue common ground policies which can dramatically reduce abortions in America, and help bring us together on this divisive issue.

4. Reverse the effects of climate change on God’s creation. We must learn a new way of living in America to end our dangerous dependence on Middle East oil. We need a spiritual commitment to stewardship and national policies that promote safe, clean, and renewable energy. You spoke of job creation and economic renewal with a new “green economy.”

We need your presidential leadership for this type of societal transformation, but I promise also to do my part.

I will pray for you as you assume the awesome responsibility of leading our nation. To be the best president you can be, you will need both the support and the push of the faith community. I pledge to help build the movement that will keep your administration accountable and faithful.

Blessings,

[Your name]

Click here to sign and send the letter

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