The Rev. Dr. Andrew Weaver, a United Methodist pastor well know for his efforts to research the activities of so-called renewal groups working to undermine mainline Christian churches, was in St. Louis this past week to meet with clergy in the St. Louis Association of the United Church of Christ. Dr. Weaver showed those assembled how right-wing secular foundations use groups like the Republican Party-aligned Institute on Religion and Democracy to attack the prophetic voice of mainline churches on issues of important social concern. He presented some of the work found in the new book Hardball On Holy Ground.
"Hardball on Holy Ground," a new book by Steven Swecker, chronicles ongoing efforts by wealthy and powerful individuals and foundations linked to the religious right to undermine mainline churches and the National Council of Churches. One reviewer notes that a hostile takeover of these churches would represent a massive shift in American culture and the balance of ideas and values for a relatively small investment, muting the influence of the more moderate Christian community within our society. Click here for info / to order.
Those of us in mainline churches need to be aware that there is a concentrated effort to silence our voice and malign our institutions and leaders so that secular conservative voices in America can push their agenda through without opposition from Christian leaders whom might articulate a different viewpoint – one rooted in the Gospels. We cannot allow them to win such a victory.