Church vs. the white evangelical direct-mail fundraising industry

But this church-y interest has relatively little influence within or over white evangelicalism as a whole. Its concerns are usually drowned out by the far-louder voices from the much larger platforms of the direct-mail fundraising industry and the donor-devoted institutions. And both of those factions are inextricably linked to Republican politics and thus, in 2015, to being predominantly and almost exclusively white. [Read more…]

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Liberation vs. tribalism

“In order to maintain a voice within the evangelical world and make progress on a single issue,” Deborah Jian Lee writes, “one must toe the conservative line on every other issue.” That’s from her new book, “Rescuing Jesus,” which has been reviewed by Dr. Virginia Ramey Mollenkott — someone whose history makes her an expert on exactly what Lee is describing there. [Read more…]

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Lancaster County exposes the fraudulent misleadership of GOP governors and candidates

Lancaster County is doing both. It has ended homelessness among veterans in the county and it is welcoming and assisting desperate refugees fleeing ISIS’s brutality in Syria. It is doing both because in order to be the kind of community that is capable of doing one it had to also be the kind of community capable of doing the other. [Read more…]

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Proximity, affinity, and mutuality

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,” the epistle says. But anywhere and everywhere are beyond my finite ability to comprehend, to act or to pay attention. Fortunately, the letter continues, and the following sentences point toward something that can help us to move beyond the prejudices of our affinities or the paralysis of our finitude. [Read more…]

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The pros and cons of becoming a Prosperity Gospel televangelist

Should I become a Prosperity Gospel televangelist? I’ve done what it’s often helpful to do when contemplating this sort of major life decision: I’ve begun putting together a pro and con list of the potential advantages and disadvantages it would entail. [Read more…]

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Invisible dancing after an invisible famine

As a young white evangelical, I didn’t remember hearing about any dancing in Jesus’ parable. If you’d asked me about it, I probably would’ve just assumed this dancing was a part of the prodigal son’s prodigality — one of the sinful, wicked things he squandered his fortune on while living sinfully and wickedly among the sinful, wicked outsiders. [Read more…]

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Donald Trump, ‘Playboy,’ and when bigots were kids

The world is supposed to be just like it was before — back when we were kids. That means bedtime stories, playing in the back yard, prayer in schools, leaded gasoline and lousy lightbulbs, women and minorities who knew their place, gays in the closet, white men in the White House, and centerfolds in Playboy. [Read more…]

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Scenes from the class war (10.12)

“For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and in their eagerness to be rich some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains.” [Read more…]

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