Progressive Revival

Progressive Revival

January 1970 Archives

A Palin Religious Round-Up

posted by Paul Raushenbush

In advance of Thursday’s debate between Senator Biden and Governor Palin here is a round up of all the posts we have had about Sarah Palin since she came on the scene only a month ago. (Seems like forever doesn’t it?) Here […]


Catholic Bishops offer a Five-Point Bailout Plan

posted by David Gibson

A strong statement from the head of the U.S. bishops domestic justice committee offers five conditions to guide any rescue/bailout package. In the Sept. 26 statement (it didn’t get much press; I just found it now via ZENIT), Bishop William […]


A Spiritual Bailout

posted by Diana Butler Bass

Over the summer, a seventy-year old family member has struggled mightily with the possibility of losing her home.  For many months, she has been in a financial meltdown, one unnoticed by politicians claiming that the economy was “sound.” Washington politicians […]


What Do Religious Voices Have to Say About the Crisis?

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Religion & Ethics Newsweekly Anchor Bob Abernethy interviewed Rev. Jim Wallis from Sojourners and Father Jim Martin from America Magazine about the current crisis and the religion response.  Read an excerpt below: BOB ABERNETHY: Now, the financial crisis and proposals to […]

Paying For Prophecy

posted by Ed Kilgore

As most politically active Americans focused on the financial system bailout legislation over the weekend, 33 Christian ministers took the occasion of Sunday sermons to defy federal tax regulations prohibiting endorsement of political candidates by churches and other tax-exempt organizations.  […]

Eugenics lives! Lousiana lawmaker wants to sterilize the poor

posted by David Gibson

Rep. John LaBruzzo, a Republican from Metarie (David Duke’s old haunts) wants to pay poor women $1,000 to get sterilized. Why? Because people receiving food and housing assistance “are reproducing at a faster rate than more affluent, better-educated residents.” The […]

McCain Doesn’t Understand!

posted by Eddie Glaude, Jr

I know he can’t do it, but I wish he would.  Just once.  Wouldn’t it be nice if Senator Obama responded sharply to Senator McCain’s efforts to paint him as inexperience – as the naïve young man who dared to […]

Obama Takes Debate at Ole Miss

posted by Burns Strider

Senator Obama had a good night at Ole Miss. He dominated the opening discussion on the economy and held his own during the discussion on foreign affairs. Translation: signficant night for Senator Obama. I appreciate the fact that Senator McCain […]

The God-less Debate

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Missing from the vocabulary of tonight’s presidential debate on foreign relations and the economy were such small terms as God, religion, and faith – there wasn’t even a God Bless America.   I co-direct the Program on Religion, Diplomacy, and […]

Just Say “No” to Any Immediate Bailout-Don’t try band-aids to keep the Tower of Babel Standing

posted by Michael Lerner

Rabbis of antiquity interpreted the attempt by humanity to build a Tower of Babel that would allow people to storm heaven as a symbol of human hubris and technological power gone crazy. It was globalization for the sake of power, […]

The Apocalypse Rears Its Head

posted by Diana Butler Bass

With media attention directed toward the largest economic story in recent American history, other stories are falling by the way.  One of the most interesting–and surely least understood–is the story of Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin’s religious faith. As […]

No debate in Mississippi? Well, at least we wouldn’t have to help all those poor, deprived visitors understand the differences between grits and hushpuppies, cornbread and cake… molasses and glue.

posted by Burns Strider

I hope both Senators Obama and McCain show up for the debate at Ole Miss. Its important to see our two choices together, interacting, answering the same questions. Showcasing why they should be President is pretty much their job right […]

Wall Street – Repent!

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Apparently we have a deal to bail out Wall Street using 700 Billion dollars of tax payer’s money to ensure that we same tax payers don’t suffer an even more severe downturn.  The frustrating thing for most of us following […]

The GOP Casino Gravy Train: First Abramoff, then Reed, now Adelson

posted by Eric Sapp

Jack Abramoff’s in prison…Ralph Reed is disgraced…what’s a poor Republican to do when they need access to casino money to fund their most outrageous attacks on Democratic opponents?  Answer:  Turn to Vegas Casino Billionaire Sheldon Adelson and his shadow 527 […]

Vatican newspaper: “New economy” is a “sham”

posted by David Gibson

Looking for a Catholic–some would say traditionally Christian–point of view on the economic meltdown? The  church has long-standing teachings and resources that I think could be useful–and an antidote to some of the idolatry and fatalism of unfettered free-marketeering. (“Hey, stuff […]

Ads Urge Candidates Not to Bear False Witness in Presidential Debate

posted by Paul Raushenbush

When Steve Waldman asked the question whether the 9th commandment was a lesser one he must have struck a nerve: Listen to Ad Here is flooding the Mississippi airwaves this week with radio ads demanding accountability and honesty from […]

The Jewish Vote – A Backlash Against Christians?

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Should or shouldn’t Jews vote for John McCain?  What effect does his choice of Sarah Palin as running mate (apparently instead of Joe Lieberman) whose religious world view is frightening and repellent to most Jewish voters have on their decision? […]

“Where Your Treasure Is”: The Economy and Values

posted by Eric Sapp

As we contemplate the fact that Republicans are arguing for the largest U.S. government interference in the free markets in our nation’s history–a bailout just shy of being equal to the entire US debt when Ronald Reagan became President–Democrats MUST […]

Praying for Obama in Africa (by Briallen Hopper)

posted by Paul Raushenbush

As world leaders gather in New York and Friday’s first debate focuses on international affairs, it is important to keep in mind the overwhelming support that Senator Obama has among the average people around the world. While this might seem […]

Miami Archbishop: We’re not “party bosses”

posted by David Gibson

That is the bracing message from Miami Archbishop John C. Favalora in a Sept. 12 column that is the best rendering I’ve yet seen of how the church–and the bishops–can approach the elections. The statement is titled “Why we don’t take […]

“Otherizing” Obama: Strange face welcome in a crisis?

posted by David Gibson

The Times’ columnist Nicholas Kristof had a piece on Sunday, “The Push to ‘Otherize’ Obama,” that perfectly sums up the efforts to key in on fears of Obama’s race and persistent (unfounded) doubts about his faith, and how that plays […]

Inside Obama’s God Ops

posted by David Gibson

Barack Obama is not giving up on faith-based voters. While polls seem to show voters stuck in same pattern as 2004, despite the Democrat’s persistent outreach and God talk, the campaign is redoubling its efforts and rejecting suggestions that the […]

Abortion? Gay marriage? It’s the (stupid) economy–again!

posted by David Gibson

Do the hot-button culture war issues like abortion and gay marriage matter? If you read only blogs or the news coverage (such as this NYTimes story, “Abortion Issue Again Dividing Catholics”) you might get the impression that these are the […]

Among the Unbelievers: New poll shows secularist strength

posted by David Gibson

Results from the huge American Religious Identification Survey (ARIS) of 2000 stunned many and led to heated debates when it showed some 14 percent of Americans embracing some form of secularism. Preliminary numbers released today from the upcoming 2008 ARIS survey […]

Hunger Advocate and Former Congressman Tony Hall Connects Faith to Economic Woes

posted by Mara Vanderslice

Beginning next week, the Matthew 25 Network will run a new ad on Christian radio stationsin Ohio connecting the Christian mandate to care for the least among uswith the economic crisis in Ohio and around the country.  FormerCongressman Tony Hall, […]

Buddhist Values in the Public Square

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Given the recent summit on Value Voters, and the crisis on Wall Street I thought it might be interesting to ask a non-Christian on what values informed his approach to the public square.  I sent an email to Robert Thurman, a […]

Palin: The Religious Right’s American Idol (by Lisa Sharon Harper)

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Lisa Sharon Harper is executive director of New York Faith & Justice and the author of Evangelical Does Not Equal Republican … or Democrat   If the Republican Convention was American Idol and Palin’s speech was a rock ballad, Palin […]

Votes and Consequences

posted by Ed Kilgore

There’s been a lot of discussion here at Beliefnet and elsewhere about the variable impact of cultural issues like abortion in the current presidential campaign.  And it’s safe to say most Democrats have concluded that Barack Obama’s prospects for victory […]

Abortion & Catholics: Big wedge–small impact?

posted by David Gibson

The furious division in Catholicism over abortion and the presidential election grows wider. But to what end? A front-page story in today’s New York Times is titled, “Abortion Issue Again Dividing Catholic Votes,” and yet evidence of how that is […]


posted by David Gibson

The turmoil on Wall Street is continuing, and even though it is closer to me than even Russia is to Alaska, I understand less than little about economics. And yet the human toll of the crashes and crises is poignantly clear, and is spreading.  […]

Is The Ninth Commandment A Lesser One? (by Steve Waldman)

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Steve Waldman, Editor in Chief of Beliefnet has another interesting post on his blog.  He is wondering “Is The Ninth Commandment A Lesser One?” and if the McCain camp is practicing moral relativism.  You can read his post below: Several conservatives have been willing […]

Politically Speaking, Everything is a Value for a Values Voter… Like the Economy

posted by Burns Strider

How is it that many, from left to right, who believe and argue that “values” and religion play a primary role in driving voting choices don’t equate “economic” issues and concerns as values-driven?   How is it that those who are […]

Apology Needed

posted by rsider

The “Obama Waffles” episode illustrates the racism that everyone knew would surface around the murky edges of the pro-McCain campaign.  That was inevitable.  What should not be inevitable and certainly not tolerated is that evangelical Christians play a role in […]

Reclaiming Hope

posted by Paul Raushenbush

I became an Obama supporter because his candidacy and vision for America filled me with a feeling that no politician in my lifetime had inspired – hope. The hope that fueled my support for Senator Obama to be elected president was not sunny […]

Bishops v. Politicians: An abortion alternative

posted by David Gibson

Fallout over controversial remarks on abortion by Joseph Biden and Nancy Pelosi are continuing. And not just in the political sphere. The U.S. Bishops announced last week that in light of the conflicts and debates, they will address the topic […]

What values?

WHO’S VOTING VALUES-AND WHAT VALUES I got two separate documents on the computer on the same day that made me pause. If we hear the same language long enough, we can begin to believe it. One of those is certainly […]

What Do You Do When Your Senate Candidate Flounders? Mississippi Republicans Resort to Ballot Manipulation

posted by Burns Strider

Mississippi‘s Republican Governor and Secretary State are turning the November ballot upside down in Magnolia state. They are putting a race for the United State’s Senate, the most high-profile race in the state, at the end of the ballot. The […]

Palin’s Religion: What’s Scary, What’s Not?

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Beliefnet’s Steve Waldman wrote about Sarah Palin’s faith in a way that seems balanced and intelligent to me.  You can find his full text below: Those on the left, or merely those who aren’t evangelical Christians, are struggling to make […]

Reflections on September 12, 2001 (by Eric Sapp)

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Much will be written today–and rightfully so–about 9/11 and what that day meant to our country.  As with many Americans, it was a day that had a deep and emotional effect on me, but in the years since, I have […]

From 9/11 to 9/12…and beyond.

posted by David Gibson

Thursday is the seventh anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and the crashed airliner in Shanksville, Pa., an observance that will bring renewed focus on relations between Islam and the West. But […]

Land vs. McLaren: Religion and the Election

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Progressive Revival is pleased to present the second debate/discussion between two of Time Magazine’s most powerful Evangelicals: Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention, and author of Divided States of America; and Brian McLaren, Progressive Revival blogger and author of Everything […]

Abortion Can Be a Winner for Obama (by Eric Sapp)

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Eric Sapp is a Democratic faith outreach strategist and former partner at Common Good Strategies.  He is currently director of, and founding partner at the Eleison Group.   (cross posted to faithfulldemocrats) Let’s be honest, up until recently, the […]

Palin Hears Voices

posted by Omid Safi

Religious conviction is a delicate matter.    Many of the greatest reformers this world has ever known, Christ, Moses, and Muhammad, not to mention more recent figures like Martin Luther King and Desmond Tutu, all heard God’s voice, pushing them along, […]

“When does life begin?” Interesting question. But it doesn’t stop there…

posted by David Gibson

For all the wilful disparaging of the MSM by the GOP and its allies on the Christian right, there is a good argument to be made that the “media” (whatever that is, today) is reading straight out of the McCain […]

Change and Experience Matter – So Does Character

posted by Ray Flynn

I have to admit that speeches delivered by candidates at the recent national political conventions do not sway my opinion of that particular candidate.  I also know from experience that these same speeches are written by professional speech writers and […]

Something to be thankful for: McCain & Obama to appear together Thursday at Ground Zero

posted by David Gibson

From the NYT “Caucus” blog: The two campaigns issued a rare joint statement on Saturday announcing the plans of the Republican and Democratic rivals. They also will appear together at a forum later that day at Columbia University. “All of […]

Teen pregnancy: Is there a faith-based program?

posted by David Gibson

Whether Sarah Palin’s family, or Sarah Palin herself, should be an subject of commentary and scruitny has itself become a much-debated topic. But let us agree that the issues raised by her candidacy, notably the revelation of her 17-year-old daughter’s […]

Praying for Pipeline

posted by Randall Balmer

Some years ago, Melissa Fay Greene wrote a book about the rural South entitled Praying for Sheetrock. If Sarah Palin, John McCain’s running mate, ever published an autobiography, she might consider calling it Praying for Pipeline. It appears that God […]

Looking at the RNC through Muslim eyes

posted by Shahed Amanullah

If you listened closely during the various speeches at the RNC convention, you’ll notice that the times when the crowd was most animated was when Republican rage was focused on what Sen. John McCain calls the “trancendent challenge of our […]

Lay Off Palin – Please! (by Eric Sapp)

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Eric Sapp is a Democratic faith outreach strategist and former partner at Common Good Strategies.  He is currently director of, and founding partner at the Eleison Group.   An election does not go by without someone paraphrasing Will Roger’s […]


posted by Mara Vanderslice

Governor Palin’s acceptance speech sparked numerous posts and commentary, the reactions were strong, both positive and negative.  However, Senator McCain’s speech seems to have passed by without much comment. Senator McCain’s personal story and heroism in Vietnam is indeed remarkable- […]

Matthew 25 Releases Statement on Palin Speech

posted by Mara Vanderslice

The Matthew 25 Network released the following statement today in response to Governor Palin’s acceptance speech at the RNC Convention.  In the coming days we will be seeking thousands of signatures onto this statement from Christians leaders and individuals around […]

Democracy, Not Theocracy

posted by Welton Gaddy

Cross posted over at The Hill Blog. In her speech last night, Governor Palin missed a golden opportunity to explain how her religious beliefs would influence her policy priorities in the White House. This is a conversation that all of […]

An Ironic Night at the RNC

posted by Brian McLaren

There were four highly ironic moments for me last night, watching the RNC on television. First, Rudy Giuliani seemed to side with down-to-earth, rural, moral, family-friendly middle America against the urban, educated, gay-friendly, divorcing East Coast elite – and neither […]

A Jewish Perspective on Palin

posted by Leonard Fein

“A grand slam home run,” the commentators agreed.  More like a foul — a very foul — ball to me. The subject is, of course, Sarah Palin, whose not-yet week-old candidacy for Vice President of the United States has sucked […]

Plenty of Punches, But No Policies

posted by Renita Weems

Congratulations to Governor Sarah Palin for proving last night that she came honestly by her high school nickname “Barracuda.”. She certainly carried forward the McCain strategy of mockery, ridicule, sarcasm and disrespect. Sarah Palin showed that there is at least […]

Disappointed in Palin’s Speech

posted by Mara Vanderslice

As a woman and as a Christian- I came away deeply disappointed by the speech Sarah Palin gave tonight in front of the RNC Convention. At a time in our country’s history when we have a chance to address the […]

Darfur Follow Up: Take Action

posted by Rabbi Or N. Rose

Join the Save Darfur campaign to build political pressure for the next president to make Darfur a priority from day one in office.  The campaign includes efforts to gather a million postcards to deliver to the new president urging the […]

Sounding the Alarm: Darfur, Elul, and the Presidential Election

posted by Rabbi Or N. Rose

Today is the third day of the Hebrew month of Elul.  This is the last month of the Jewish calendar, a time of sustained introspection in preparation for Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New Year) and Yom Kippur (the Day of […]

Palin cut funding for pregnant moms in need

posted by David Gibson

The Washington Post has the story here, and a facsimile of the bill on which Palin herself wrote out how much to cut and where: ST. PAUL — Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the Republican vice-presidential nominee who revealed Monday that […]

Does Palin have a Pastor Problem?

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Nico Pitney and Sam Stein at Huffington Post write that Palin’s Pentecoastal Church May Have Shaped A Controversial Worldview.  They write: Three months before she was thrust into the national political spotlight, Gov. Sarah Palin was asked to handle a much […]

“Palin’s pregnant!” Easy, easy…It’s only her unwed 17-year-old daughter.

posted by David Gibson

I had thought the terrifying onslaught of Gustav and the efforts by the GOP to dodge the Katrina bullet–or turn it to McCain’s benefit–would be the story of the day, but the bombshell news that Sarah Palin’s 17-year-old daughter Bristol […]

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