|Pagan Institute Report National News
enemies of the people are criminals and government,
so let us tie the second down
with the chains of the Constitution
so the second will not become the legalized version of the first.
----- Thomas Jefferson, Unitarian
> National Prayer Day for Sacred PlacesJune 21 Set for 2007 National Prayer Day r >JJustice Dept. Reshapes Its Civil Rights Mission
> Human Pentacle Instructionse Sacred Places (D.C.)
> Native Elder Pleads to Heal the Holes in the Earth's Body through
> Research on Workplace Discrimination against Pagans
> Peter Berger: For Americans, Religion has become a choice
Reporting Religious Strife? Lowell McFarland responds to The
> Free & Open Internet Still Under Siege: Network Neutrality to be
gutted! ACT NOW
> American Legion Supports Bill Ending Legal Fee Awards for First
> National Holiday for Native Americans -- Petition
> Help Stop the Creation of a National
Database of Personal Information
> The Interfaith
Press Releases on Government & Religion
> Other Religious News Sources
> Faith, Politics &
> Welcome to the 1930s
from European observers, by Christa Landon
> On Complacency with
Press releases appear
with white backgrounds.
June 21 Set for 2007 National Prayer Day for Native Sacred Places
WASHINGTON June 19, 2007, Indian Country Today- Observances and ceremonies will be held across the country June 21 to mark the 2007 National Day of Prayer to Protect Native American Sacred Places. The exact times and days for public commemorations are listed below.
Some of the gatherings highlighted are educational forums, not religious ceremonies, and are open to the general public. Others are ceremonial and may be conducted in private. In addition to those listed below, there will be commemorations and prayers offered at sacred places that are under threat at this time.
Among the endangered places listed in the pages of this statement are sacred places that are being desecrated and damaged now, such as Hickory Ground in Alabama; San Francisco Peaks in Arizona; and Wakarusa Wetlands in Kansas.
There are other holy places which are being threatened with injury or destruction: Bear Butte in South Dakota; Little Creek Mountain in Tennessee; the Medicine Lake Highlands in northern California; Ocmulgee Old Fields in Georgia; the Petroglyphs in New Mexico; and Snoqualmie Falls in Washington.
''Native and non-Native people nationwide are gathering to honor sacred places, with a special emphasis on those that are endangered by actions that can be avoided,'' said Suzan Shown Harjo, Cheyenne and Hodulgee Muscogee. She is president of The Morning Star Institute, which organizes the National Prayer Days.
(June 19, 2007, Indian Country Today)
Read the full story
See also from The Pluralism Project (Harvard U.) Native Americans and Sacred Land
Justice Dept. Reshapes Its Civil Rights Mission
WASHINGTON, June 13, 2007 — In recent years, the Bush administration has recast the federal government’s role in civil rights by aggressively pursuing religion-oriented cases while significantly diminishing its involvement in the traditional area of race.
Paralleling concerns of many conservative groups, the Justice Department has successfully argued in a number of cases that government agencies, employers or private organizations have improperly suppressed religious expression in situations that the Constitution’s drafters did not mean to restrict.
The shift at the Justice Department has significantly altered the government’s civil rights mission, said Brian K. Landsberg, a law professor at the University of the Pacific and a former Justice Department lawyer under both Republican and Democratic administrations.
(June 14, 2007, The New York Times)
Read the full story
Here's another take:
Orwellian Civil Rights at Justice Dept.
From the June 14, 2007 Progress Report
The Bush administration has recast the Justice Department's role in civil rights "by aggressively pursuing religion-oriented cases while significantly diminishing its involvement in the traditional area of race." The Department "has transferred or demoted some experienced civil rights litigators" while bringing in "graduates of religious-affiliated law schools...who favor the new priorities."
Subscribe at www.americanprogressaction.org
The Human Pentacle Project was
inspired by the long struggle to persuade the Veterans
Administration to include the Pentacle as one of the optional
religious symbols on headstones in Federal cemeteries.
Human Pentacle Instructions
Nels of Upper Midwest Pagan Alliance
I had hoped to find a mathematical equation relating to the
straight line distance between ADJACENT points of a pentacle in
relation to the circle diameter that encloses them. There is a
formula for the connected points distance but it is so precise
(something like 47.53 on a fifty foot circle) that you get way off
Essentially the best method is take half the people (say 15 of 30)
and make as round a circle as you can. Divide circle number by
five...a point every three people. Take three people and make each
line from point to every other point. Voila! a 30 person
adjust divisibility by how far the people are apart (like for 25
use 15 people close together for circumference, and five lines of
two people each stretched wide.
For the Minnesota state capitol image, I actually laid out a 50
foot pentacle, and then by hand found the adjacent point distance
using a rope as measuring tool, but really the method above
probably works just as well....
Any budding mathematicians with a better plan out there?
report on Carolyn Wiethoff's research into Pagan perceptions of
religious discrimination in the workplace
Research on Pagan Perceptions of
Special to Pagan Institute Report
By Christa Landon
March 8, 2007
As regular readers of Pagan Institute
Report may recall, Carolyn Wiethoff, Ph.D., teaches
and conducts research at the Kelley School of Business at Indiana
University-Bloomington. Her research focuses on the
workplace experiences of people whose religion is considered
"non-mainstream" or "minority" in today's society.
While Wiethoff herself is not a Pagan, she has been interested in
studying Pagans at work for two reasons: First, management
researchers knew next to nothing about religious discrimination at
work, and nothing at all about Pagans' experiences specifically.
Second, Pagans are the ideal subject group for research on
workplace practices that both make people comfortable disclosing their religious beliefs at work and/or make
people feel that they will experience negative repercussions if
they make that disclosure. This is because Pagans can be more
invisible than other minorities and thus generally can choose
whether or not to make that disclosure.
About two years ago, she requested that Pagan Institute Report
publish her request for Pagans to participate in her study of
Pagan perceptions of workplace discrimination. Her questions
- What is it
like to be Pagan at work?
- Do your
- Have you experienced
- Are you
happily "out of the broomcloset" at work?
Her goals have
and call attention to workplace discrimination faced by Pagans, Wiccans,
and members of similar religious groups;
the nature of the workplace experiences felt by these
workplace practices that both lead to religion-based
discrimination and reduce it;
- inform managers about Pagans and their workplace experiences;
prescriptive suggestions about workplace practices that
contribute to making ALL workers feel accepted and comfortable
Wiethoff on March 7, 2007 for an update. At present results have
been tabulated and the report is being written, but here is a
preliminary report special to Pagan Institute Report.
494 Pagans gave
complete (and therefore usable) survey data.
Wiethoff found that there are many similarities between coming out
of the closet and coming out of the broom closet. Pagans
were much more comfortable in the workplace and more likely to
come out of broomcloset...
- if the
Pagan believed that the company's protection of religion policy
applied to them;
- if there is
open religious diversity (anything other than main-stream
Christianity) in the workplace; or
- if there's
a general sense that the organization welcomes and celebrates
diversity, through special events, support groups, active
diversity education. As global organizations were
perceived as committed to welcoming everyone, Pagans felt safer
and were more likely to come out in the workplace.
didn't mention the interest which Marketing and some Human
Resources departments have in attracting "cultural creatives,"
Pagans generally fit into that category and furthermore, "cultural
creatives" generally prefer being in communities with high levels
Her follow up research will be studying attitudes towards Pagans by
If you would like
to share your experience, please write to the Editor (note spambot-baffle.)
Carolyn Wiethoff, Ph.D.
Clinical Assistant Professor of Management
1309 E. 10th Street
Bloomington IN 47405
indiana.edu (note spambot-baffle.)
My name is BlueThunder aka Bennie
LeBeau, of the Eastern Shoshone Nation located on Wind River
Indian Reservation in the center of Wyoming. The Warriors of
Old have sent me many messages in dreamtime and other ways from
I thought that you might be interested in
considering communicating with us as we continue to work to heal
our environments in nature, by sealing with ceremonies the holes
dug into Mother Earth. She is charged and blessed by the Great
Spirit, the Sun, through our Sacred Sites. She shares this life
force with all of the living things in creation. This energy
gives us our bodies the electrical magnetic energy charge, by
which our spirits survive on the surface of Mother Earth.
Wherever we have not followed the Earth Protocols of the
Indigenous Wisdom when cutting or digging holes in her body, we
have wounded Her Heart. Our Mother is bleeding energy from
these wounds. The energy bleeding away is the life force of all
beings upon Her.
The Creator, our Father, and our Mother the
Earth have together sent dreams and instructions to heal the
environment before the coming great shift, when the power of the
Great Spirit within the Sun will increase. The date for
purification is 2012.
In the near future, many
serpents will rise from the underworld and fix on any holes
which have not been repaired or sealed by us. This means every
last hole that has been dug or cut into our Mother: the holes
cuts in roads, pipe lines etc., and under the houses, casinos,
high rise buildings, you name it. If we have not followed the
Earth Protocols of the Indigenous Wisdom when cutting or digging
holes in her body, those who live in the neighbor hoods or
homelands will pay a price. Those who heal with reverence the
areas where we live will be all right in the days ahead. Those
that do not move to heal those holes in her and purify the
Earth, Wind, Fire and Water with our creation ceremonies will be
Healing all that has been imprinted with negative actions can
and will be purified and cleansed by us or by Mother Earth. She
is giving us time to consider doing this and to act, but we do
not have much time left. This means all nations who are asleep
at the wheel and do nothing but TALK peace will not HAVE peace,
unless they consider and act upon some of the messages that have
been sent to help our families and relatives of all Nations.
The many messages say that ALL cultures are children of Mother
Earth. No matter what their ancestors have done in the past they
and we are to be forgiven, clearing all what has happened.
No one to blame but us for our thoughts and actions. But we must
all now deal with all that have been passed down from our
ancestors' actions. All the actions of all Nations -- positive
and negative -- have caused what has happened to Mother Earth
and us. Now is the time to move forward, getting over what took
place in the past, present and coming into peace for the future
depends upon our actions, immediately.
We as Tribal Nations must consider how we
teach Peace, sharing our wisdom and healing ceremonies. But to
heal, we must recognize that no Nation is entirely innocent.
Today, just as in the past, many of our own have forgotten the
Ancient Wisdom and went to warring with one another. The
messages say that many of the White, Black, Yellow and even the
Red Nations will not change. Many who will not come
to Peace will suffer the consequences of their actions. Many
will perish by the Sword of their own souls' actions and
The Great Spirit and Mother Earth love us
so much, they are working together in overtime to help all
nations remember peace and the ways of our ancestors.
Mother Earth sends messages for us, asking us to consider that
She shares the Winds, Waters, Mountains, Valleys, trees,
flowers, animals. She shares all things and asks, "What has
happened to us? Where has our generosity gone? We can
re-establish many sacred actions we carry as Indigenous Nations.
In this way, we can re-educate the White, Black, Yellow, Red and
Brown Nations with the wisdom and knowledge needed for peace.
This is prophecy: it is
not too late to protect our families from the great purification
that is happening right in front of our eyes around the world
and here in the Americas. This is a time for peace in
our hearts healing our many differences in all Nations. We must
turn our backs to face each other now, looking into each and
everyones' eyes, to heal the past injustices that many have done
to each other, including us as Indigenous Nations. No one is
exempt from these actions; all our Nations' Ancestors wounded
each other in the past to survive.
I ask that many of our sisters and brothers
of all Nations will receive in their hearts the message of this
wisdom for peace within all nations. We must then send it
from our hearts so that together we can help all our children
heal from the anger and hate of the last seven generations of
Nations. The many messages say then we will clear the way for
our children for the next seven generations to live together in
As we move forward working together, we can
heal our homelands, by supporting one another in coming hour of
darkness and joining the healing ceremonies. We as Indigenous
Nations have the power to recreate Mother Nature and restore
harmony, by healing the wounded sacred sites that hold the life
force together for all living things. We have the creation
stories and ceremonies to do this.
offer instructions for such ceremonies at http://www.visionslifeforcefoundation )
Blessings are to you and your families. May we heal all that is
and walk in the beauty Mother Earth, for she will restore us.
All that we ask we shall receive when we do the ceremonies in
peace with all cultures and nations. Again many blessings to
Thank you for you time and consideration on these messages.
Blessings be Ours!
Please consider reading the websites below to learn about their
work or peace. These are my sister and brother organizations
that work closely with our groups here the Americas and in
We have many great messages of Spoken Truth, from the Warriors
of Old, as our Nations Unite Within Souls We Walk. These were
sent from The Great Spirit through his spiritual messenger,
White Eagle. This information is on the Visions Life Force
Foundation website along with the current ceremonies that are to
be held to heal Mother Earth.
BlueThunder, Eastern Shoshone, March
14th, 2007, Wind River Indian Reservation, Wy.
Feb. 12, 2007 - Religion News Service
For Many Americans, Religious Identity No Longer a Given
Speaking at a Forum event, sociologist Peter Berger argued that one's religion is no longer an
accident of birth. The change is part of modernity's shift "from
fate to choice."
May 18, 2006
The Interfaith Alliance
This Sunday, May 21, on The Interfaith Alliance's national radio
show State of Belief, Rev. Welton Gaddy exposes the coordinated
effort to undermine mainline Protestantism -- and render America's
largest denominations incapable of standing up to right wing
This unprecedented look into the takeover of America's churches
reveals the ugly truths, personal experiences, and exhaustive
research of four leaders:
Dr. Bruce Prescott, Executive Director of Mainstream Oklahoma
Baptists, is, like Welton, a veteran of the purges that marked the
conservative takeover of the Southern Baptist Convention. The
strategy, says Prescott, is to keep mainstream denominations in
turmoil over wedge issues such as gay marriage, so that
conservative leaders can be free to achieve
their political and religious goals.
Dr. John Dorhauer, minister for the St. Louis Association of the
United Churches of Christ, has seen congregations around him
descend into in-fighting, provoked by right-wing propaganda.
Dorhauer explains, "What the politically motivated achieve is the
silence of the religious conscience voice that has historically
led this country....If you take out the 45 million people that are
represented by the National Council of Churches, you are going to
hollow out one of the cores of our nation's democracy."
Dr. Andrew Weaver, a United Methodist pastor and research
psychologist, has traced the campaign against mainline
Protestantism largely to the Institute on
Religion and Democracy, a think-tank funded by uber-conservatives such as Richard
Mellon Scaife and The Adolph Coors Trust.
Weaver says that the IRD and so-called
religious "renewal" groups are funneling money in "a systematic
effort to undermine mainline churches that still have democratic,
transparent processes." The problem in countering
these efforts, he says, is that "All of these traditions have
niceness at the core; while we've been thinking it's touch
football, they've been playing tackle."
Welton offers listeners a wake-up call: "The Southern Baptist
Convention was lost not because of those trying to take it over,
but because of people arguing that it wasn't a big deal."
This issue has never before been discussed on
national radio, and continues State of Belief's focus on how
religion is being manipulated for partisan political purposes. It
may stun listeners - and it is sure to inspire Protestant
congregations to reclaim their role as a positive and much needed
healing force in our nation.
State of Belief:
religion and radio, done differently.
State of Belief is heard nationwide on Air America Radio on
Sundays, 5pm EST. Information about local affiliates, listening
live via the internet, or podcasting can be found at
| Green Views:
on the News
By Lowell McFarland
While the instant target
pernicious Religious Right assault is seemingly fellow
Protestants, we believe that this is
part of a strategy, much wider than
just the religious right, begun after
the disastrous 1970's defeat in
Vietnam, to blame moderates for
all ills, and systematically scheme to
control and defeat them.
For instance, support or anger at
political issues, and foreign and
domestic policies, are also a major
factor in these concerted actions.
Pagans, as moderates, have also
been at the effect of these control
freak actions and are easily driven
back into the shadows with the
littlest public adverse commentary.
Like mainline moderate Protestant
groups, we Pagans also easily fall victim to a
few naysayers or some noisy
arguments by a few. All of which blunts
Forever the Celtic story!"
Lowell McFarland is a
regular contributor to Pagan Institute Report
Free & Open Internet Under Siege:
Network Neutrality to be gutted! ACT NOW
Do you buy books online, use Google, or download to an Ipod? These
activities will be hurt if Congress
passes a radical law that
gives giant corporations more control over the Internet.
Internet providers like AT&T and Verizon are lobbying Congress
hard to gut Network Neutrality, the
Internet's First Amendment. Net Neutrality prevents AT&T from choosing which websites open
easily for you based on which site pays AT&T more. Amazon.com doesn't have to outbid Barnes & Noble for the right to work more
properly on your computer.
Politicians don't think we are paying attention to this issue.
Many of them take campaign checks from big telecom companies and
are on the verge of selling out to people like AT&T's CEO, who
openly says, "The internet can't be free."
The free and open Internet is under seige--can you sign this
petition letting your member of Congress
know you support
preserving Network Neutrality? Click here:
A list of all the ways you might be affected by Net Neutrality is
located on the bottom of this link:
H.R. 2679, the "Public
Expression of Religion Act" was introduced in March, 2005 by Rep.
John Hostettler (R-IN),
"To amend the
Revised Statutes of the United States to eliminate the chilling
effect on the constitutionally protected expression of religion by
State and local officials that results from the threat that
potential litigants may seek damages and attorney's fee."
Under Section 2 of PERA, the
"(b) The remedies with
respect to a claim under this section where the deprivation
consists of a violation of prohibition in the Constitution
against the establishment of religion shall be limited to
"(b) Attorneys Fees -
Section 722(b) of the Revised Statutes of the United States (42
USC 1988) is amended by adding at the end of the following:
'However, no fees shall be awarded under this subsection with
respect to a claim described in subsection (b) of section
nineteen hundred and seventy nine."
If this or a similar bill is passed, it would amend the Civil Rights Attorney Fees Act to stop courts
awarding legal fees or damages to any individual or group
which successfully sues under the
Establishment of Religion clause
of the First Amendment. Supporters
argue that mere threat of lawsuits is having a "stifling effect"
on Christian religious practices, specifically the public display
of the Ten Commandments and other sectarian symbols on public
property. Minority religious groups are almost never in the
privileged position to use governmental resources; strict
separation of church and state is the best protection for minority
Another proposal by Rep. James DeMint (SC) disallows "attorney
fees in any action claiming that a public school or its agent
violates the constitutional prohibition against the establishment
of religion by permitting, facilitating, or accommodating a
student's religious expression."
The American Legion became interested
in the issue as result of litigation over a six-foot Christian
cross erected in 1934 as a veteran's monument at the Mohave
National Preserve. In 2001, the American Civil Liberties Union
filed suit arguing that the cross violated the First Amendment as
a "religious fixture" on public property. A federal judge
eventually ordered the monument dismantled, and attorneys received
$63,000 in compensatory fees.
In a statement announcing its "National Awareness Campaign to Stop
Abuse of the Taxpayer," Legion
commander Tom Bock said that the
original intent of the U.S. Code awarding legal fees was "intended
to help the poor obtain legal counsel in claims of real, tangible
violations of civil right." To launch their
American Legion issued a printed and pdf file document, "In
the Footsteps of the
Founders -- A Guide to Defending American
Values." The conservative worldnetdaily.com web site
"many legislators expressed surprise at the size of the attorney
fees sought and gained by the ACLU and indicated support for the
president of American Atheists argues
that the Hostettler bill "is not for the benefit of the taxpayer,
but for government and religious leaders who insist on eroding the
wall of separation between church and state. They know, as do we,
that most attorneys are simply unable to work on long-term, complex litigation if they don't receive some compensatory fee.
We're not talking about donating a few free hours 'to the cause.'
These cases require an enormous amount of time and effort."
As it is, one of the greatest limiters on the activity of the ACLU
outside of major metropolitan areas is that local attorneys who
might otherwise accept cases are threatened with loss of other
conservative organizations in their towns. PERA and
other attempts by conservatives to limit legal fee
represent an effort to effectively deny access to trial attorneys
for victims of medical malpractice, dangerous consumer goods, and
the worst possible abuses of robber baron capitalism.
Johnson said that governments are often quite willing to squander
taxpayer funds in order to defend their unconstitutional
"Whether it is school prayer or
defending a religious monument in the public square, state and
governments are frequently very short-sighted and
belligerent when caught doing something that
violates the First
Amendment," Johnson said. "If the Legion and Representative
Hostettler really wish to save all of us some money, they should
work to stop unconstitutional practices that promote religion."
Press Release from ACLU
ACLU Action Network Members:
Help Stop the Creation of a National Database of
By Matt Howes, National Internet Organizer, ACLU
The rise in identity theft has impacted many of
our lives. Just today, for example, data broker LexisNexis
reported that personal information on 310,000 U.S. citizens may
have been stolen.
Now, several Members of Congress are pushing
legislation that would compile your most personal
such as your name, address, social security number and perhaps
even your DNA, into a
national database. This giant network would
then be accessible by numerous government officials and
with Mexican and Canadian bureaucracies, dramatically increasing
the risk of your personal
information being stolen and abused.
Take Action! Urge Congress to oppose legislation that
would result in a national ID
and imperil your personal privacy.
This proposed legislation would create a
national system to store your personal contact information and
personal biometric information, which could include your
fingerprints, DNA or retinal scans. It would drastically alter who
has access to your personal information. Thousands of government
employees across North America would have access to these personal
details, and hackers, thieves, terrorists and organized criminals
would have a single one-shop destination for identity theft.
Based on the outcry by concerned activists like
you, the legislation's supporters know they cannot get it to pass
as an independent bill in the Senate so they are trying to attach
it to an unrelated appropriations bill.
A vote is expected later this week and we need
you to contact your Senators and urge them to oppose adding this
ill-conceived legislation to the supplemental appropriations bill.
Click here for more information and to contact
Faith, Politics & Progressives
Tuesday, April 26, 2005
John Podesta, President & CEO, Center for American Progress and former chief of staff to President Clinton, talks about religious progressives and religious centrists
It's tempting to look at that and believe, as I think many opinion
leaders do, that whatever common ground there is between the walls
of faith and politics, it's generally on the right. I think that
enhanced the belief that American politics is polarized into two
warring factions: a religious right that promotes government
intervention in all areas of private life, so long as it doesn't
interfere with the free market, and a secular left, which would be
content to do the opposite. I think that's a simplistic assessment
and it may explain why it's so widely held, because it is so
simplistic. But obviously, I think, as particularly people here
know, the reality of this is far more complex.
... It's clear that President Bush motivated his base around
opposition to same-sex marriage and abortion. He was on solid
footing with the conservative wing of the religious community. I
think it did fire up his organizational base...But I don't think
it won the hearts and minds of a new silent majority, which is
waiting in the wings - Americans who believe that you don't need
conservative in order to be religious.
"We conducted a poll with a couple of organizations we had worked
with over the course of that year - Pax Christi, a liberal
Catholic organization, and a group called Res Publica - that Zogby
did after the election, and what we found in that national poll
was that 54 percent of the
electorate is a coalition of religious moderates. So-called
religious progressives and other non-traditional voters made up 54
percent of the overall electorate.
...We asked the question, What were the most important moral values facing the country?
And I think that was perhaps where the most interesting result
64 percent said that
greed and materialism and poverty and economic justice were the
most important moral questions facing the United States; 27 percent said abortion and gay
marriage, with abortion accounting for the vast majority of that.
The truth is that many people of faith are worried about the
coarsening of our culture, but they're also worried about their children's schools, about the quality of air we breathe, about the water they drink, about the increase in poverty.
They're concerned about terrorism and war. These are not Americans who hear their faith or their politics in the voices of Pat
Robertson and James Dobson and others on the religious right - and
maybe I should add Bill Frist and Tom DeLay to that mix.
In fact, these Americans resent the efforts
of conservatives to squeeze religion into a narrow, rigid mold - a
personal piety that excludes much of God's creation and many of
Clearly, many would identify with that progressive religious
tradition that I was speaking about earlier, where historically
social change has come from in this country."
[Center for American Progress] started with the belief that
whether you're a Christian or a Jew or a Muslim or a Buddhist, you
loved your neighbor and you recognized your responsibility to your
community and to the nation. The people who came together, I
think, truly believed that progressive governance is not only more
effective, but it is the right thing to do in a
profoundly moral sense.
We have proceeded from that in two fashions. One is that we try to
have a commitment to making clear and making sure that this is a
piece of our policy work, that the values agenda, if you will,
that I think is reflected by that silent majority of religious
moderates and religious progressives is part of the work we do. We
try to frame up
policy choices and governmental choices in terms
that people who come from different faith traditions are familiar
.. [Our focus is on] renewing and restoring a progressive
religious tradition that for most of our history helped make ours
a more benevolent, a more compassionate, a more caring society.
The Center for American Progress:
The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life
1615 L Street, NW Suite 700
Washington, DC 20036-5610
Return of the Religious Left
being inherently centrists
and progressive, especially in areas of
gender equality, tolerance and the
environment, we should make
more known to both the Pew Forum and
the Center for American Progress.
going to want US
when I read such material.
On the one hand, I personally certainly support
If the Catholic
social teaching and Protestant
social gospel folks can speak
it will be good
for the Republic, which
needs all the help it can
presence might provide just
more ammunition for the radical right,
be strategically helpful.
On the other
hand, I've had enough
interfaith experience to know that
folks are a minority in a group, they will
tend to find
common ground with others
who are also in
the minority, until
they can form a majority.
Christian ecumenical groups
admit <gasp!> Mormons and Quakers, are
and Muslims really any more
in all the
laudable -- efforts to
include Muslims in
groups, will they merely
re-organize as Abrahamic faiths? It
in fact, allow them to swear on the
Bible, as they all
believe in the "Old
radically inclusive religious group
to adopt the "People of Faith"
the Unitarian Universalist Association.
fully recognize that UUs and Pagans
practicing religions, I
the concerns of Nicholas Von Hoffman,
an essay calling for the uncompromised
defense of secular_society.
Will the center
for American Progress let US
play? Or will they tell us they must
only one rabbit, and that the best thing
they can do for us
is focus on their core
mission, which, as I see it, is to reclaim
Christianity from the Repressive Radical
Good luck to
are other interfaith
groups which exist for dialog and mutual
I hope that
Pagans take increasing roles in
graduate degrees, (M.A., U of
Chicago Divinity School, D.Min.,
Meadville/Lombard Theological School,
U of C affiliated), the only
my participation in major interfaith
organizations is the funds to attend.
Pagans want such
they'll support it.
Now that you know,
DO something about it?
Check out Pagan Institute Report's
National Holiday for Native Americans -- Petition
To: All people of the world
Congress of the United States
Senate of the United States
President of the United States
It is inappropriate for Indian children and children of America to
celebrate Columbus discovering a nation of people and not having a
holiday paying tribute to the people of those nations.
We the undersigned come together before you to request that each
of these governing bodies take all necessary action
> To bring about a Federal Holiday for Native American Elected
> To include Congressional hearings on the racial exclusion of
Native Americans in movies,
television, sports advertising, music companies, etc.
Current Signatures 40,073 Signatures - Sign the Petition
PLEASE PASS THIS PETITION ON TO YOUR FRIENDS & FAMILY!
Religious News in
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Interfaith Alliance (TIA)
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| Press Release
from from PCUSA
NEWS to PRESBYNEWS
November 4, 2004
Triumphant evangelicals seek
passage of conservative social agenda
By Adelle M. Banks
Religion News Service
WASHINGTON - After a generation of involvement on the political
scene, religious conservatives say they may finally have come into
With the re-election of President Bush and a
galvanized grass-roots movement, evangelical Christian leaders are
confidently predicting the advance of their social agenda.
"I think before there was a perception problem,"
said Paul Weyrich, who co-founded the now-defunct Moral Majority
in 1979 and now chairs the Washington-based Free Congress
Foundation. "The view was that we really didn't have the troops to
make a difference."
But Bush was returned to office Tuesday on the
wings of evangelicals. Three out of four white voters who
described themselves as evangelicals or born-again Christians
voted for Bush, according to an exit poll of more than 13,000
voters conducted for the Associated Press and the television
networks. That represented about one-fifth of all voters.
"Before our strength was a question mark," said
Weyrich. "Now it's an exclamation point."
Religious conservatives have a wish list of items
they hope Bush and a Republican-dominated Congress will address,
including legislative bans on same-sex marriage, continuing
efforts to limit abortion and appointment of judges who do not
meet their definition of "activist."
Overcoming past stages of political apathy,
evangelicals are now energized, their leaders say - not just at
the voting booth, but for future action to let the political
powers know they have certain expectations.
"I think that the voters spoke with a clear voice
yesterday on ... the issue of marriage, which speaks more broadly
to the issue of judicial activism," said Tony Perkins, president
of the Washington-based Family Research Council, in a Nov. 3
"I think if they do not hear that voice on the
Hill, they're deaf."
Corwin Smidt, director of the Henry Institute for
the Study of Christianity and Politics at Calvin College in Grand
Rapids, MI, said evangelicals already have the ear of Republicans
but now Democrats may begin to pay more attention to them.
"There's going to be some listening done," said
Smidt, a political science professor. "Evangelicals
probably have greater access now to decision makers."
Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist
Convention's Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, said the
influence demonstrated by "people of faith" at the polls goes
beyond white evangelicals to black evangelicals, Roman Catholics
and observant Jews.
"There is a cultural struggle going on for the moral high ground
in this culture, and we conservative, traditional-values people of
faith - in all of our
denominational manifestations - made a significant, strategic
advance in this election," said Land.
While many pundits predicted high voter turnout
would benefit Democrats, evangelicals showed they, too, could
mobilize. For his part, Land traveled along with an "iVoteValues.com"
tractor-trailer as part of his ministry's nationwide voter
He said he hopes Bush will now give some issues
of religious conservatives - namely passage of the proposed
Marriage Protection Amendment - the same level of attention in his
second term that the president gave prescription drug benefits in
Evangelicals may even expand to issues beyond
questions of life and marriage, said the Rev. Richard Cizik, vice
president of governmental affairs for the National Association of
Evangelicals. He cited climate change as a growing concern.
"It's an important way in which the Republican
Party could reach out across the political divide and say, 'We
care about the environment,'" Cizik said.
The Rev. Jerry Falwell, chancellor of Liberty
University in Lynchburg, VA, and co-founder of the Moral Majority,
wouldn't predict demands for political payback from the Bush
administration. He did say [evangelical Christian] complacency is
not an option.
"I know after eight years of Ronald Reagan that
many seemed to become apathetic and fell asleep; I don't think
that's happening now," he told Religion News Service. "I just do
not think for a moment anybody ... from our camp (is) going to
rush the president and say, 'We did this. Now you do that.' It
just doesn't work that way."
Carrie Gordon Earll, a spokeswoman for Focus on the Family, based
in Colorado Springs, CO, said the gay marriage issue renewed energy
that had dissipated in the evangelical movement. Evangelicals are
now determined to work for passage of the marriage amendment and
election of "a true conservative" as the next justice to the U.S.
Supreme Court, she said.
"This is a spike in the chart of evangelical passion
and involvement," she said.
Michael Cromartie, director of the Evangelicals in
Civic Life project at the Washington-based Ethics and Public
Policy Center, said evangelicals may not win every political
battle ahead, but there is no question they will loom large in the
Republican Party for years to come.
"They're not taking over the party," he said, "but
they are major players in the party. They're major players at the
table of Republican discourse."
(RNS Correspondents Itir Yakar and Wangui Njuguna contributed to
The preceding articles
were sent by Presbyterian News from the Religious News Service and
reposted relative to 17 USC Section 107.
| Green View:
Complacency may not be an option with
evangelical Christians but it appears to be
option of choice for Pagans. As a
Pagans seem to be alone in this
complacency among all other
America. Most all other
leaders and religions
are now congressing to
stunning extremist religious
While the majority of evangelical Christian
ministers were subtly, or not so subtly,
preaching that "...God has finally sent
a president..." and distributing
pamphlets boasting of Bush's
religiosity, Pagans were
preaching that we
should not get
Even now, as evangelical Christian leaders
engraving their wish lists to get all the
paybacks they worked for,
Pagans are asking
that their members
be nice and don't argue or
to take their
political comments off-list.
Evangelical Christians, once a small,
disorganized and powerless group, publicly
announced their grandiose takeover
ORGANIZED, and then
and FINALLY SUCCEEDED
In a classic case of extremists allying
themselves against complacent
disunited, tolerant and
allied themselves with
extremists (very rich people and
corporations who were war, health and
profiteering) and a variety of
and jingoists, to
take control of America.
In the same time, Pagans
seemed to find
excuse NOT to organize, NOT to
congress, NOT to
enlist national Pagan
spokespeople, NOT to
active, NOT to alert their
members to the
obvious activities of evangelical
and their religious/political agenda and
NOT to fundraise to pay for standard and
needs of the Pagan community.
While religious leaders from most all of
religions have regularly visited
the White House,
and achieved results as
well as their photographs
Presidents, we do not know of any Pagan
leaders who have visited the White House
last 100 years!
Back then environmentalists John Muir
Horace McFarland visited Presidents
Roosevelt and Wilson in the first 1900's.
McFarland's interaction with the
presidents brought America our
Service and many other
environmental firsts--which are now lauded
As Pagans, our history shows that we fared
under various forms of enforced,
state-monotheism, especially when
complacent or tribally disunited
in the face of
looming control-freak behavior
extremists who took control of
We are proud of the many, many Pagans who
fought and voted for tolerance and better lives
In contrast to apolitical American Pagans,
European Pagans have organized and become
very political when needed: British Pagans
the government, got Stonehenge opened
and can now conduct sacred rites at
and several other ancient Pagan
European Pagans joined with
others to defeat
Christian efforts to include
a statement declaring
"Christian roots" to
Europe in the new European
Constitution; European Pagans
successful efforts to make the 2004
as Pagan as possible in their ancient
home in Greece; Brittany/Bretagne French
Pagans joined others to defeat French laws
made French parents name all children
French Christian names; Irish Pagans
their government to better
preserve the ancient
Pagan sites and
megaliths; Hellenic Greek Pagans
their government (and the
Church) to allow them to conduct Pagan rites
at ancient Greek Pagan sites;
Pagans in other
European countries are fighting
governments for official recognition and
religious aboriginal acknowledgement.
Obviously, because we American Pagans did
even try to effect the agenda, the agenda
America, and perhaps the agenda for many
American Pagans, will be set by others,
by organized and gloating evangelical
Obviously still, the lessons learned from these
last two presidential elections are that being
complacent or wishy-washy is not beneficial to
either presidential candidates nor Pagans.
We now need to form overdue Pagan national
organizations and join our tribes when
so that we can continue the good
NOTE: Moderate Christians, members of other
religions, Atheists and secularists, are very
concerned about the apparent intrusive action
fundamentalists in this election and are
convening their national leaders to discuss all
forever the Celtic story!"
Lowell McFarland <email@example.com>
May 6, 2007