Rick Warren, who has been out of the news for, oh, about 10 minutes, since the controversial California pastor was picked to give the invocation at Barack Obama's inauguration, is back.
Recapping here: After sticking a fork in the eye of gay rights advocates by actively supporting Proposition 8 -- which overturned the legalization of gay marriage in California -- Warren compounded their outrage by equating gay marriage with incest in an interview with Beliefnet.
The hubbub lulled down a little over the holidays but today, he's back, with an open invitation to any group displaced by their denomination. This is code for Episcopal congregations that oppose that church's acceptance of a gay bishop in 2003. Earlier this week, a California judge ruled that a breakaway congregation, St. James in Newport Beach, cannot keep its property now that they have left the Episcopal Church.
The Southern Baptist Warren shared his letter with Christianity Today which says, in part:
We stand in solidarity with them, and with all orthodox, evangelical Anglicans. I offer the campus of Saddleback Church to any Anglican congregation who need a place to meet, or if you want to plant a new congregation in south Orange County.
This is pretty much guaranteed to revive demands by gay rights advocates for Obama to reconsider Warren for the invocation. My bet is that Obama will hold firm, maintaining, as he has before, that this is a diverse nation and that Warren, as much as Rev. Joseph Lowery, a zealot for civil rights, are equally welcome on the podium. Lowery is set to give the benediction.