Faith & Democracy

faith-democracy

I write this on All Saints Day, and I find myself calling on the name of Don Benedict to celebrate this holy day in the life of the Church. Don’s name comes to mind because I have been one of several Protestants for the Common Good advocates who have been involved over the past year in fashioning the merger with the Community Renewal Society. Don was a key person in leading CRS and in founding PCG. In some ways, our merger talks have been a way to reclaim his unified and grand vision for Christians acting faithfully in the world.

Welcome to the 495th edition of Reformation Sunday! In the church in which I grew up, Reformation Sunday was kind of a big deal. It was the day when we confirmed groups of ninth graders who’d spent two or three years in Wednesday night confirmation classes. It was a morning for pulling out all the stops on the organ and hiring extra string and brass players. It was a day for preaching doctrine, talking about justification by grace through faith, and congratulating ourselves on being Lutherans. A lot has changed.

How could he, after all these years, miss the point? You’d think, after seventy-five years in Christian ministry, after studying the Bible even longer, after preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ in every corner of the world, my Baptist colleague, Billy Graham, would have gotten the point.

The leaves are falling from the trees, people are beginning to bundle up against chilly winds, and, after last night's riveting presidential debate, there is no question that fall is in the air. Here at Protestants for the Common Good, that means our education and advocacy work has moved into high gear.

The rule – the operating assumption, that is – in a democratic republic is that everyone will vote for the candidate who will best advance that voter’s self interest.

Recently -- that is, since the Republican and Democratic Conventions -- President/Candidate Obama has shared the suggestion that former President Bill Clinton be appointed to a newly created Cabinet post of “Secretary of Explaining Stuff.” Mr. Obama acknowledges that this is an edited version of the original suggestion: the one who first offered the proposal used another word for “stuff.”

Bloomington, IL: The Illinois League of Women Voters, in cooperation with the Center for Tax & Budget Accountability, will be hosting informational trainings on how the fair tax campaign is progressing in Illinois. Attendees will receive background information on the topic and messaging ideas for how to effectively talk about the issue. The Bloomington training will be held at 304 South Eldorado Rd., Suite 2, from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.

It was heartening to learn that so many churches in Chicago last week passed the welcoming test that Jesus created. That is, they opened their doors to welcome children.

The Republican and Democratic conventions are over, and it's going to be *November 6th* before we know it. This is a big election, not only because you will vote to determine our next president, but because all of Illinois' state legislators are up for re-election due to redistricting. You will vote for your federal representative as well. We want to make sure that everyone in Illinois is registered and ready to vote!

Rockford, IL: The Illinois League of Women Voters, in cooperation with the Center for Tax & Budget Accountability, will be hosting informational trainings on how the fair tax campaign is progressing in Illinois. Attendees will receive background information on the topic and messaging ideas for how to effectively talk about the issue. The Rockford training will be held at the IEA Offices, 4949 Harrison Ave, Suite 102, from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.

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