The political activity of Christians in this election year, churches’ efforts to address homosexuality, and the church/state debate ranked among the top stories of 1992, according to six newspaper religion writers interviewed by CHRISTIANITY TODAY.
“We a saw a diminishing influence of the Religious Right in Washington, but a rise in grassroots political activity,” said Gayle White, religion writer for the Atlanta Journal Constitution.
These grassroots activities included efforts of Pat Robertson’s Christian Coalition and the National Association of Evangelicals’ (NAE) Christian Citizenship Campaign to increase political involvement among evangelicals.
The results, of course, were mixed, with the major setback coming at the highest level—the presidential election. Most surveys revealed that about 28 percent of the evangelical vote went to the winner, Bill Clinton, while some 55 percent went to President Bush.
The Silence Of The Left
Election activity revealed that the time when political activity was the exclusive domain of Christianity’s “liberal” wing has passed. Said Richard Vara, religion writer for the Houston Chronicle, “The moderate to liberal wing of American Protestantism is disengaged politically because right now they are much more concerned with their internal struggles.”
The Journal Constitution’s White noted that in some mainline denominations, most notably the Presbyterian Church (USA) and the United Methodist Church, “the laity and the clergy are attempting to seize control from the denominational bureaucracies.”
Studies published this year revealed that giving to mainline denominations has declined substantially. Said David Briggs of the Associated Press, “This will mean significant changes in the way these churches ...1
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