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The religion of the left…
Now, if anyone that actually practiced a religion said anything remotely like that about say, George W. Bush, they would have been absolutely pilloried in the press. Yet the AP reports this story fawning on both Sting and Obama. I guess you are only allowed to mention God if you do not really believe in Him.
How long before…
The German domestic intelligence service keeps the Church of Scientology under surveillance as a potential threat to democracy. Belgian prosecutors have been building a blackmail case against it for 11 years.
Now the French have taken a more forceful step.
In a decision that could reverberate across Europe, a court in Paris Tuesday convicted the French branch of the church of “organized fraud” and said it had systematically tricked recruits out of their savings.
I do believe Scientology to be fraudulent as a religion, but then I think many of my Christian brethren practice a bit of fraud in their ministries too – yet I must defend their right to be a free religion because in doing so I defend my own. Now, of course, European church/state laws are quite different than here, but this crosses a pretty serious line – worth watching.
…or then there is something like this shooting at a synagogue. I honestly fear for some of my Mormon friends that worked hard on Prop 8. Consider this.
The Invisible Primary…
How will “targeting” be used in it? Here’s an interesting look at how politics is done. Lists and lists of lists. And NY-23 continues as a sort of conservative litmus test, but you know, no one will remember by the time the real primary roles around in early 2012.
Pawlenty. Unsurprisingly, it seems like no one really seems to know who he is. But, he is working very hard to change that fact.
Palin. K-Lo thinks she is not serious about going to Iowa. Polling shows that she is loved, but most people do not think her “qualified” for higher office.
While in the background…
Mormons are not the only ones that find themselves “on the outside looking in” when it comes to working with other varieties of Christian faith. This is an Evangelical/Catholic thing inside a para-church ministry, so there is not necessarily the mandate for cross-theological cooperation like there is in politics, but the attitude here is instructive. I’ll try not to get too preachy here, but something is very wrong inside Christianity when these doctrinal issues become this important. Somewhere we are losing focus on why we follow our faith to begin with. It is not about being “right,” it’s about being better. On Faith is wondering if that is possible without religion.
It’s hard to tell in the quiet of a color-splashed autumn morning, but Redeemer Fellowship Church is trying to set its roots in a rough neighborhood. For churches, anyway. Until this new church opened last month, the 19th-century Congregational Church building in suburban Watertown was empty for nearly two years. Across the street, a closed Baptist church is filled with condos. So is a former Catholic church half a mile away.
Dead churches are a familiar story in New England, which recent surveys indicate is now the least religious region in the country. But some see opportunity in a place where America’s Christian faith laid its roots.
That says volumes about why New Hampshire is so very different than Iowa in how it votes in the primaries. It explains why last time guys that would not appeal to religious types (McCain, Giuliani) would kick off in NH and not Iowa. It also says why Romney would be smart to do the same in ’12.
Finally, discussion of the Founders and their faith are usually petty and pointless, but I found this blog post more or less on target.
If there is an incompatibility between orthodox Christianity and the American Founding Presidential political theology, it’s that the latter is too ecumenical. Orthodox Christianity is not eccumenical; it believes Christ the only way to God. Evangelicals and Roman Catholics can gather together over their shared belief in Nicene orthodoxy; but the America’s Founding political theology went further.
The irony is — and I’m all about playing up delicious philosophic irony — those who most loudly and popularly defend the “Christian Nation” idea have a tight definition of “Christianity” and are likeliest to term such a theology as “not Christian.” In other words, they evaluate what is a “Christian” as it relates to “their beliefs on doctrines of salvation.” Gregg Frazer doesn’t even do this when he constructs a definition of late 18th Century “Christianity” that excludes what the first four Presidents believed. Gregg forms a 10 point lowest common denominator among the creeds of the largest “Christian” sects in 18th Century America. And this includes Roman Catholics and Anglicans who would not pass the “born again”/salvation standard of evangelicals.
All of which makes me wonder when I read this:
…the term Moralistic Therapeutic Deism to describe the emerging faith among American teenagers,…
if these emerging teenagers are any closer to genuine religion than there deeply divisive parents, but I do think they might be easier to live with.