Monday, January 12, 2009

PREACHERS, POLITICIANS & PUBLIC PRAYERS

The dance of American civil religion uses gullible or ego-driven clergy

WHO IS HELPING WHOM? I wonder why preachers continue to think they can influence policies or sway political leaders by offering prayers at public events? Whether it's Billy Graham, Rick Warren or Eugene Robinson--they're all being used. Graham confessed that he regrets responding to all those calls to the Oval Office just before a President declared war or needed "spiritual counsel" when the decisions had already been made. It's part of the dance of American civil religion. Some priest from among the people has to sanctify the self-serving justifications. When politicians call, preachers, spare yourselves and us--run the other way!

In the spirit of dialog, I welcome comments and/or questions. Click on "responses" below to post. They're moderated only to reduce incivility. Shalom!

2 comments:

  1. Thought you might resonate with the entry at this blog from 1/14/09 on Faith in the Halls of Power.

    http://drtscott.typepad.com/pastor_scotts_thoughts/

    ~ mm (Marty Michelson)

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  2. That looks like an interesting book, Marty. C. Everett Koop was something of a hero of mine when I was in college. I was shocked when Fundmentalists and right-wing Evangelicals attacked him later on when he was Surgeon General. I think he lived some principles that were above ideology--whether religious or political.

    You know, I think praying in public can be valid and is needed. And public service is valid and needed. But it is an arena not for the naive, gullible, shallow, narrow-minded, weak-willed, or spiritually unsurrendered.

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Your tasteful comments and/or questions are welcome. Posts are moderated only to reduce a few instances of incivility.