Progressive Revival

Progressive Revival

January 1970 Archives

God Damn Wall Street!

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Ok, I had to get a little Jeremiah Wright off my chest because the disgusting behavior of Wall Street while our economy crumbles has made it tough to maintain equanimity.     The rip off disgrace of Bernie Madeoff, the spa adventures of […]


Pray the Devil Back to Hell

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Bob Herbert wrote his column today in the New York Times about the political power of prayer to make peace in Liberia as documented in Pray the Devil Back to Hell.  The next time someone says to you that religion is […]


Faith in Davos?

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Arianna Huffington reports that while most of the mood of the participants in Davos was grim, their was an uipsurge in religious talk: If bankers and politicians were stocks, the people here would be shorting them (although there is definitely still a “buy” […]


The New Faith Based Initiatives

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Joshua Dubois appears to have been named the director of  the Council for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. According to the New York Times, the President and Dubois are looking for new ways to make this organization work for the common good.  […]

Obama Reaches Out to Muslim World – On TV!

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Part 2 Transcript This is the White House transcript of President Obama’s interview with Hisham Melhem of al Arabiya television Internal Transcript January 26, 2009 INTERVIEW OF THE PRESIDENT BY HISHAM MELHEM, AL ARABIYA Map Room 5:46 P.M. EST Q […]

Obama, the Muslim World and a New Way Forward

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Katherine Marshal is the former director of the religion and development program at the World Bank.  She has been tracking international responses to the election of Barack Obama and wrote about reactions from the Muslim world to the inauguration which ends with […]

The Pope’s historical revisions

posted by David Gibson

Benedict XVI continues to take heat on two fronts since last weekend’s reinstatement of four far-right, schismatic bishops: from Catholics anywhere to the left of Franco are upset at the implicit repudiation of Vatican II, and from Jews who are […]

Obama New Religious Pluralism

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Adelle M. Banks and Kevin Eckstrom give this analysis of President Obama’s inclusive religous inauguration and what it indicates for his approach to religion in the fture.  A couple of Progressive Revival bloogers weighed in: Randall Balmer: “If the inauguration is any […]

Are Non-Believers Americans Too?

posted by Paul Raushenbush

It looks like Obama was a bit too inclusive last Tuesday when he included non-believers in his inaugural address:  “For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, […]

Jim Walllis Supports Obama’s Abortion Approach

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Rev. Jim Wallis of Sojourners issued this statement today on  the manner that President Obama made his decision to reverse the policy that restricted federal money for any international NGO that provides or promotes abortion as part of family planning efforts.   […]

Obama: the New Anti-Abortion Poster Child (by Kate M. Ott)

posted by guestblogger

Kate M. Ott is the associate director, Religious Institute on Sexual Morality, Justice, and Healing During the President’s Inauguration, Catholic Vote ran an advertisement on BET (Black Entertainment Television) that used Barack Obama‘s story as an anti-abortion tale. My first reaction […]

Pro-Choice While Seeking Common Ground

posted by Sally Steenland

Thirty-six years ago today, women were legally granted a basic right of conscience. In Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court ruled that women, rather than politicians, appointed boards of physicians, or review panels, were the ones to decide whether or […]

Obama Signs Executive Order of American Ideals

posted by Paul Raushenbush

The New York Times reports:  “Saying that “our ideals give us the strength and moral high ground” to combat terrorism, President Obama signed executive orders Thursday ending the Central Intelligence Agency‘s secret overseas prisons, banning coercive interrogation methods and closing the Guantánamo Bay detention camp […]

A wonderful and refreshing new theological look at the abortion debate

posted by Eric Sapp

It is not often that one comes across a way to approach the abortion debate that is new…so imagine my surprise and delight when I read the challenging piece on that raised theological questions about this debate I had […]

Obama Anti-Abortion Video and Real Abortion Solutions

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Today is the annual March for Life in Washington. This compelling video was just released.  I wonder what President Obama’s life would have been like had his mother been forced to bring the pregnancy to term rather than choosing.  Another group has […]

For Muslims, what a difference a year makes

posted by Shahed Amanullah

Only a year ago, some Muslim Americans seriously wondered if they were considered a part of the American fabric.  Presidential candidates (mainly on the Republican side) regularly alluded to Islam and/or Muslims as an existential threat to America.  Muslims felt […]

Harmonies of Liberty by Rev. Dr. Sharon E. Watkins

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Rev. Dr. Sharon E. Watkins gave a rousing sermon at the National Prayer Service today.  She was the first women to be given this honor and she hit it out of the park.  With Bishop Gene Robinson and Rev. Joe Lowery, […]

The Inauguration According to Westboro Baptist Church

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Just our own little bit of American Christian fundamentalism at the inauguration.  (I think they are secretly a radical pro-gay group doing street theater)

Inauguration Invocation vs. Inauguration Benediction

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Here are the texts of the Invocation given by Rev. Rick Warren and Benediction given by Rev. Joseph Lowery at the Inauguration of Barack Obama. Which prayer was more fitting for the occasion, or spoke to you and why?    Rev. Warren Let Us Pray:Almighty God, Our Father, everything […]

The Inauguration Of Barack Hussein Obama

posted by Paul Raushenbush

At the core of the inauguration of the 44th president of the United States was the clear, real, and inspiring inaugural address given by President Barack Hussein Obama.    I was among the millions who were on the mall.  My […]

The Exodus and the Status Quo (by Rabbi Shai Held)

posted by guestblogger

Those of you have been my friends and/or my students over many years have no doubt heard me say it countless times before: the meaning of the Exodus is that anything is possible, that there is no status quo that […]

Text of President Obama Inaugural Address

posted by Paul Raushenbush

OBAMA: My fellow citizens: I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. I thank President Bush for his service to our nation, as […]


posted by Welton Gaddy

Just as I seek to protect appropriate boundaries between religion and government, I also protect appropriate boundaries between my work as President of Interfaith Alliance and my role as Pastor of Northminster Baptist Church in Monroe, LA. That is not […]

Making History

posted by Diana Butler Bass

My grandmother’s grandmother touched Abraham Lincoln’s coat.  One day, when she was a little girl, her father rushed into the house and said, “Come on, we are going to the train station right now.”  Once outside, they joined a large […]

The power of Dreams

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Everyone today is talking about Obama and MLK, for obvious reasons. I have my own two cents at City of Brass about how Obama is right to de-emphasize the MLK connection, however, in favor of the Founders themselves. After all, […]

A Letter to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (by Marian Wright Edelman)

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Marian Wright Edelman is the Founder and President of the Children’s Defense Fund. The following is an excerpt from Ms. Edelman’s book: The Sea is So Wide and My Boat is So Small.  This is a long post for Progressive Revival but on […]

Barack Obama, Race and the Power of Progress!

posted by Paul Raushenbush

There have been many, (many!) Barack Obama t-shirts that appeared over the long months of the presidential election, but my favorite was the multi-colored portrait of the candidate boldly underlined with the word “Progress.”  Progress was promised in the policies […]

A New President, MLK, Mother Parks, a Congressman, My Boys and Me

posted by Burns Strider

Bedtime Stories   Last night’s bedtime story for my two little boys was about Mother Rosa Parks. A few nights ago we read and talked about Dr. King.   On Monday morning, MLK Day, I will do what I have […]

Dear Rick: A Lesson on Race

posted by Renita Weems

Dear Rick: A Lesson on Race It took several days for me to decide whether to post the email below. It arrived Sunday night in my mailbox. I read it and became immediately suspicious. “You kidding, right?”  It’s obvious that […]

Farewell, President Bush

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

At Nation-Building, I give kudos to the President for what he did right. In a nutshell: no attacks on US soil, a war on terror instead of Islam, and Africa. Still, I think Obama should check the White House keyboards […]

Religious Freedom Day 2009

posted by Welton Gaddy

President Bush has declared today, January 16, 2009 as Religious Freedom Day.  Other presidents have done the same. However, it is an ironic act on the part of a president who leaves office with a dismal record on protecting and […]

So Help Obama God

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Another prayer controversy – and it doesn’t involve either Warren or Robinson.  Should Obama say the words “So help me God” as he is sworn in on Tuesday? Obama wants to, a group of atheists doesn’t.  The atheist group is […]

Gene and Rick: Post-Partisan Parable 2

posted by Diana Butler Bass

A few days ago, the Obama team announced that Bishop Gene Robinson, the Episcopal bishop who is an openly partnered gay man, will pray at Sunday’s Inauguration rock concert on the National Mall.    On the Rachel Maddow Show, Bishop […]

will he chatter the Oath?

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

If you’re headed to DC for the Inauguration, I still envy you. But, not as much as before. As Khan Noonian Singh said, “Revenge is a dish best served cold…” Well, insamuch as Obama’s historic victory can be considered a […]

Cease Fire Now in Gaza – Full Page Ad in the New York Times

posted by Michael Lerner

On Wednesday Jan. 1st the Tikkun Community and the Network of Spiritual Progressives purchased an full page Ad in The New York Times (it appears on page A17 of Wednesday’s issue).  It was signed by about 3000 people and funded […]

The Sideshow — News and Lessons from the Republican Civil War

posted by Burns Strider

Republicans have a problem… they don’t know who they are. Devastated The 2006 and 2008 election cycles were devastating for the GOP. They went from the Roveian-based belief that they had basically won the political war and Democrats would be […]

“There Is No Alternative” Is No Answer

posted by Leonard Fein

Crossposted at The Jewish Daily Forward.  In August of 1973 I arrived in Israel as a guest of the Foreign Ministry. For reasons I no longer recall, the ministry had decided that trying to effect my conversion to its view […]

Mark Driscoll’s Bullying Pulpit

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Mark Driscoll (aka the cussing preacher) was profiled in The New York Times Magazine on Sunday.  Here is an excerpt: “God called Driscoll to preach to men — particularly young men — to save them from an American Protestantism that […]

The Gaza Conflict and Concentration Camps

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Beliefnet Bloggers Rabbi Brad Hirschfield and David Gibson have had an interesting, heated and apparently productive debate that was initiated by a Catholic comparing Gaza to a concentration camp.   From the last post by Rabbi Hirschfield:  Thanks to Pontifications […]

Bishop Gene Robinson to Give Prayer at Pre-Inaugural Event

posted by Paul Raushenbush

The New Hampshire gay Episcopal Bishop, Gene Robinson will offer a prayer at the Lincoln Memorial on the Sunday before the inauguration.  This is really great news and seems to me to be an appropriate and brave gesture by the […]

Rick Warren Gives Sanctuary to Anti-Gay Episcopal Churches

posted by Paul Raushenbush

This is just a bit more grist for the Rick Warren debate.   Just as he took the side of the anti-gay bishops in Africa, Rick Warren has welcomed the anti-gay churches in America who are choosing to leave the […]

The Gaza Conflict: From Status Quo to Solutions

posted by Paul Raushenbush

My friend Eboo Patel, the executive director of the Interfaith Youth Core, wrote a great piece on the On Faith blog at the Washington Post.  He has three status quo approaches that continue the cycle of violence and then contrasts […]

Obama Rejects Torture

posted by Paul Raushenbush

President Elect Obama gave the American people an injection of much needed hope for the moral underpinnings of our country at this press conference. It is especially striking in contrast to Dick Cheney.    ‘Under my Administration the United States does not […]

Will Israel Split America’s Religious Left?

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Steve Waldman asks the question whether the current crisis will split the religious left.  He predicts: “Most likely what will happen next is that an over-reaction from the Protestant left will prompt American Jews into an uncomfortable (but familiar) defensive […]

The Urgency of Now – Obama Must Act on Gaza

posted by Omid Safi

The death toll from Gaza keeps rising like a morbid nightmare, from 150 to 300, to at last count 702 victims.     702 Palestinians killed by the Israeli military through massive bombings that have inflicted unimaginable violence upon some of the […]

The Booming, Powerful Voice of Congressman Jim Clyburn (D-SC)

posted by Burns Strider

One of the many blessings I have been afforded over the years was the opportunity to serve and work for Congressman Jim Clyburn of South Carolina. As a white Southerner, this African American Congressman, also of the South, taught me […]

The Truth About Rick Warren In Africa

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Max Blumenthal on Daily Beast digs deeper into the work of Rick Warren in Africa.   “Team Obama likes to cite Warren’s work on AIDS in Africa to combat criticism about the controversial pastor. But how does burning condoms in […]

Jon Stewart Speaks on Gaza

posted by Paul Raushenbush

John Stewart speaks some difficult truths on this segment. The Daily Show With Jon StewartM – Th 11p / 10c Strip Maul Barack Obama InterviewJohn McCain Interview Sarah Palin VideoFunny Election Video

A Strategy to End the Israel/Palestine Struggle Once and For All

posted by Michael Lerner

The leadership of the State of Israel has rejected the latest calls for a cease fire. Only President-Elect Obama has the moral authority to make a call for a cease fire that could be listened to seriously by the Israelis. […]

Israel in Gaza

posted by Michael Lerner

Israel is still using a strategy of domination in its struggle with Hamas, trying to use force to gain security. But this is a recipe for endless war. Gaza, December 31, 2008Israel’s attempt to wipe out Hamas is understandable, but […]

Tim Kaine and the DNC’s Faith Initiative

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Obama’s pick of Tim Kaine for the DNC Chair means a continuation or expansion of the DNC’s Faith Outreach.  Dan Gilgoff explains on his blog God and Country “Barack Obama’s decision to tap Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine to be the next Democratic […]

And There Lie the Bodies (by Gideon Levy)

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Gideon Levy offers this powerful parable in Haaretz.  He laments that there are no voices speaking up within Israel now about the war in Gaza but he proves himself wrong though this impassioned essay: “The legend, lest it be a […]

The Gaza Conflict: Towards a Miracle in the Middle East

Today is a day to cry for Israel. Today is a day to cry for the Palestinians. Today is a day to cry for all of us.   Today is a day of war. War anywhere, at this point in […]

Moderate Islam Makes Inroads Via Satellite

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Surf the TV or press seek on the radio –  if you find a religious station in America you can be sure it is preaching a very conservative message in sincere dulcet tones.  This story from the New York Times about moderate Islam […]

Barack Obama and the (progressive) Religious Revival

posted by Paul Raushenbush

Barack Obama’s transition team is ringing in the New Year with a series of meetings with religious groups reports Dan Gilgoff at US News.  It is striking that the names that dominate the list are the very ones that some […]

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Why Jews Around the World are Praying for the Victory of the Egyptian Uprising
Originally appeared on Tikkun Daily BlogEver since the victory over the dictator of Tunisia and the subsequent uprising in Egypt, my email has been flooded with messages from Jews around the world hoping and praying for the victory of ...

posted 1:48:39pm Feb. 01, 2011 | read full post »

When Generosity, Love, and Kindness are Public Policy, the Violence We Saw in Arizona will Dramatically Diminish
The attempted assassination of Congresswoman Giffords and the murder of so many others in Arizona has elicited a number of policy suggestions, from gun control to private protection for elected officials, to banning incitement to violence on ...

posted 2:44:04pm Jan. 19, 2011 | read full post »

The Spiritual Messages of Chanukah and Christmas -- and Their Downsides
Christmas and Chanukah share a spiritual message: that it is possible to bring light and hope in a world of darkness, oppression and despair. But whereas Christmas focuses on the birth of a single individual whose life and mission was itself ...

posted 12:59:53pm Dec. 02, 2010 | read full post »

Obama (and Biden) Have No Clue About What's Bothering Their Political Base
Shortly before the California Democratic primary in 2008, the San Fransisco Chronicle invited me to write a short article explaining why I, chair of the interfaithNetwork of Spiritual Progressives, was supporting Barack Obama. Like ...

posted 1:44:11pm Sep. 30, 2010 | read full post »


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