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View Diary: As Fundies Die Off, the Religious Left Grows (139 comments)

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  •  In my urban neighborhood (6+ / 0-)

    is a thriving Protestant congregation of people in their 30s you could only describe as evangelical. They're really enthusiastic about church and Christianity. Most of the attendees didn't grow up attending church, or else grew up attending a different church, occasionally. So parishioners at these services would qualify as "born-again" Christians. They have Bill Graham books on the literature table during their service, all of it.

    And I don't think they mostly vote Republican, when they vote, or are constrained by RW politics in any way.

    Yes, if there was a link between religion and RW politics in the 1980s, it's certainly degraded now.

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 11:21:51 AM PDT

    •  There's another takeaway from (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TomP, ScienceMom, Cassandra Waites

      this anecdote, the question about just what makes a church popular.

      A few blocks away from this church I just described (which found the money to purchase a historic local building) is another church, also Protestant, also in a very attractive, more modern setting. And it's dying as we speak. It's a Gay-90s church (parishioners are either gay, or else in their 90s), and there aren't enough of either demographic to keep things afloat. This is a frankly progressive, "open, inclusive" congregation, with an active social-justice ministry.

      Why is one church, the evangelical one, doing so well and attracting new converts, while the other, mainstream one, appears to be stagnating?

      I believe it's not the influence of RW ideology that makes one congregation swell, and the more mainstream one shrink. It's something else, entirely.

      It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

      by karmsy on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 11:49:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  is there prosperity gospel? (4+ / 0-)

        People love to hear that their selfishness and greed is not a sin, but in fact a sign of God's grace.

        Every woman is the boss of what goes into her vagina, and what comes out. Not you, not me, not the GOP.

        by nominalize on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 02:54:25 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I once attended a service at the (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          TomP

          more popular of the two churches in my area. I did it out of curiosity, to see if they had a social-justice ministry and would be interested in hosting an educational speaker for a cause I was working on at the time. The answer was no, no social-justice ministry, at least not a formal one. On the other hand, interestingly, I heard the minister bashing WalMart from the pulpit. He did it during the sermon, as an aside, in an: "I-know-the-evil-of-Walmart-is-already-long-passe-in-our-culture" tone. So, a lefty-progressive slant to the place, but, as far as  I know, they stop short of formally endorsing political involvement of any kind.

          It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

          by karmsy on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 03:06:26 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  It's quite regional (6+ / 0-)

      There are a couple of large  (nondenominational) evangelical churches that fit that model near us, in the Maryland suburbs of DC.  

      There are a few others that are highly politicized, including one that was for ages constantly stirred up over something or another at a nearby public high school.

      These churches are quite entrepreneurial, and will deliver the political message only where it will sell.  Same reason that local Fox broadcast stations in DC and NYC rarely deliver the RW message during their news shows.

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