Faith and Politics: How the

Faith and Politics: How the "Moral Values" Debate Divides America and How to Move Forward Together

by John Danforth
     
 

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John Danforth, an ordained Episcopal priest and former U.S. Senator, offers a unique vantage point for examining one of the most conflict-ridden issues in America: the intersection of religion and politics. FAITH AND POLITICS explores the widening rift between left and right, conservative and liberal, believer and nonbeliever. Danforth takes on many of…  See more details below

Overview


John Danforth, an ordained Episcopal priest and former U.S. Senator, offers a unique vantage point for examining one of the most conflict-ridden issues in America: the intersection of religion and politics. FAITH AND POLITICS explores the widening rift between left and right, conservative and liberal, believer and nonbeliever. Danforth takes on many of the hot-button issues that are polarizing: stem-cell research, Terri Schiavo, gay marriage, and others. He looks hard at the issues—some of which have touched him personally—and addresses how we can approach them with less rancor. Arguing that the Republican Party has lost track of its core principles and that the Christian right-wing has lost track of the Christian message, Danforth's book is a much-needed clarion call to Americans for improving our lives as people of faith and as civilians. The paperback edition will have a new Introduction from the author, reflecting on recent developments.

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Editorial Reviews

We'd be hard pressed to find anyone better qualified than John C. Danforth to assess the current debate over the role of religion in American politics. Throughout a lifetime of public service, this ordained Episcopal priest and former three-term Republican senator has advocated for reason, moderation, and reconciliation in all matters political. Now, in this eloquent critique, Danforth deplores the identification of his party with the religious right and castigates both liberal and conservative extremists for using "wedge issues" like gay marriage and stem cell research for political gain. He candidly admits his personal failings, explains the ways faith has influenced his political decisions, and offers a practical blueprint for returning the focus of government to the crucial matter of finding common ground.
Publishers Weekly
Danforth, a Missouri Republican as well as a lawyer and Episcopal minister, tended to avoid nasty partisan politics during his three terms in the U.S. Senate (with the notable exception of his defense of his prot g Clarence Thomas during U.S. Supreme Court confirmation hearings). After voluntarily retiring from the Senate in 1995, Danforth accepted appointments by White House Republicans, including ambassador to the United Nations and envoy for peace in Sudan. But the partisanship of President George W. Bush, a variety of other Republicans and quite a few Democrats has now led Danforth to urge political rivals to pull together to strengthen the United States, so the nation can in turn promote world peace. Danforth oozes sincerity and good sense as he excoriates "Christian conservatives" (naming James Dobson, Jerry Falwell, Ralph Reed and Pat Robertson, among others) for corrupting religious doctrine on reproduction and marriage and inappropriately inserting it in government. Conceding that he's an imperfect human being who sometimes failed as a student, husband, father, lawyer, minister and senator, Danforth comes across as a welcome paragon of virtue. (Sept.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Foreign Affairs
Few Americans bring more experience in both religion and politicsto the table than Danforth, an Episcopalian priest and a former senator, ambassador to the United Nations, and special envoy to Sudan, where he helped broker the accord ending a long civil war that had taken on overtones of a Christian-Muslim religious conflict. His current book is both a plea and a warning. Danforth wants American Christians to define their role in the world as supporters of a "ministry of reconciliation": building peace by overcoming differences and healing old wounds. With, as Danforth points out, a significant minority of Muslims embracing calls for a holy war against non-Muslims, this ministry is urgently needed. Turning to domestic politics, Danforth warns that an increasingly strident and intolerant Christian activism on the political right threatens the comity and tolerance that a ministry of reconciliation requires. That Danforth, whose political success was based in part on his reputation as a pro-life voice in the Senate, now warns about the undue strength of the religious right is a significant event in the politics of American religion. Clearly, as they look around the world for opportunities to launch a ministry of reconciliation, American Protestants should consider the possibility of addressing the splits in their own ranks that have so bitterly divided evangelical and liberal Protestants in recent decades. Having helped broker peace in southern Sudan, perhaps Danforth can now help Southern Baptists and Congregationalists learn to get along.
Library Journal
A former Republican senator from Missouri and an ordained Episcopal minister, Danforth argues that his party has taken politics too far from the mainstream. With an eight-city tour. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781101218761
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
09/19/2006
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
264
Sales rank:
639,051
File size:
531 KB
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

John C. Danforth is an ordained Episcopal priest, former three-term U.S. senator (R- MO), and former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. In 2001, President Bush appointed Danforth as special envoy for peace in Sudan, where he worked to broker a peace agreement that, in 2005, ultimately ended the twenty-year civil war.

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