reading a recent Jo Page column about her leaving pastoral
ministry [“Finding My Voice,” Reckonings, July 2], I could
not help but lament that Rev. Page left in part because she
was disillusioned by the trench warfare of Christian politics.
Nobody really ever moves from there. They just stay in their
foxholes—whether on the left wing or right. They cling to
their issues—gun control or tax reform. They both use the
Cross of Christ as vehicle for political persuasion. Sad,
since before accepting a horrible death Jesus said, “If my
kingdom were of this world then my servants would fight.”
His death was for more than the answer to political problems,
more than for legislation in a senate, be it Roman or American.
It was transcendent. The Christian politicos seem unable to
The great irony is that Rev. Lefty and Rev. Righty are forever
joined at the hip. They are psychotic, flesh eating, Siamese
twins who forever cannibalize each other with an unending
appetite. Christ did not die for politic weaponry to be forged
from fragments of the cross. He, according to the ancient
Gospel of Luke, “gave his life as a ransom for many.” His
death was a sacrifice. The postmortem is that Jesus died out
of love. He gave his life to bring sinful, angry, divided
people to unity in God. To reinvent Christianity as a weapon
to divide people is wrong.
Something in dead, numbing tradition, or in the temporary
passions of politics leaves us wanting. Page mentioned she
and her friend intuitively wanted more. And there are many,
myself included, who want more of the real thing from Christianity.
That means a change and freshness. It means we do not relinquish
hope because of the past. It means we must build the future.
a lack of vision the people perish,” reads the Hebrew proverb.
The ancient wisdom holds true for the Church today. What some
could not imagine others see and trace into reality. I am
thankful to live in a time when young North American pastors
are planting churches that are more about Christ than left
or right on a political spectrum. There are churches that
are not falling for the false dichotomy of the historic Christian
faith—that one must be either hidden in a bunker or vigorously
engaged in social activism without any mention of the historic
Christian Gospel. It is not an either or for us; it is both
and more. There is a movement of those who are eliminating
distractions and seeking to distill Christianity back to purity
of life, a community of love, and a Truth centered on Christ—the
living Lord still calling followers in 2009—out of committee
meetings, out of stale, unsatisfying and unending politics,
to a journey that brings life, and place and meaning.
Pastors come and go. Churches and denominations rise and fall.
But I say to those who are tired of the imitation, left lost
in the wilderness, don’t fall into an Elijah complex feeling
sorry for yourself on the sideline. You are not alone, and
your sulking will not help. The history of the church in America
in the 21st century is being written on a fresh page today
led by people who can see beyond the soul-sucking politics
within or without the church.
Terra Nova Church
Judith Brink [“Cruel Intentions,” Letters, July 2] articulates
exactly what I was thinking when I read Keith [Ammann]’s article
[“Stop the Madness,” Opinion, June 11]. As a patient escort
at Planned Parenthood, I have had the anti-abortionists direct
their hatred towards me and seen them take pictures of and
yell at women who are seeking health care, reducing some of
them to tears. It certainly is not “six of one, half
dozen of the other” in this disagreement.
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