Friday, March 03, 2006

More on faith and politics

Faith in action is called politics. Spirituality without action is fruitless and social action without spirituality is heartless. We are boldly political without being partisan Having a partisan-free place to stand liberates the religious patriot to see clearly, speak courageously, and act daringly. ~ The Rev. J. Edwin Bacon, All Saints Church, Pasadena


Anonymous said...

No, Ed. Faith in action is called discipline and evangelism and looking out for "widows and orphans" who come into the community of faith. That's how the first Christians began to change their own times, that's how for most of the last 2,000 years Christians have changed their own times, and that's how we are to change our own times. Why? Because to do so is to follow the model of Christ, who obeyed his call to suffer death on the cross.


Help me understand how your well taken point differs from Ed's who I understand to be urging us to advocate for widows and orphans -- among other marginalized people -- out of our faith and following the example of our Lord.

Chip Webb said...

"Social action without spirituality is heartless."

Absolutely true!

"Faith in action is called politics."

Nope. Faith in action MAY lead to political action, but faith in action is serving Christ ... whether that be through evangelism, discipleship, one-on-one encouragement or counseling, or any of a myriad of other forms. If faith in action is only political, then we'd better watch out for the separation of church and state!

Peace of Christ,

Anonymous said...

Susan, I respond with some questions for you to ponder. How does being "boldly political" fit with Jesus' remarkable teaching that his followers were not to lord it over one another as "the Gentiles" (secular imperialists and non-Jews) did, but to model mutual service? How does using "majority rule" at General Convention as a club to drive out of the Episcopal Church those with minority views fit with Paul's wise recognition that while all things were lawful for him (on account of the strength of his personal faith), all things do not build up the body of Christ? Have you considered that progressives and traditionalists have been talking past one another precisely because one network's conception of an imperative prophetic stance that goes beyond historic scripture smashes directly into the other network's conception of an imperative respect for a historic taboo that is grounded in scripture, and that less confrontation and more forbearance might actually allow all Episcopalians - not just the elected activist GC delegates, who have no Supreme Court to serve as referee - to return to serving one another as each of us is able?