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Monday, September 15, 2008

Christian Ethics Today Conference @ Truett Seminary

Tomorrow and Wednesday, I will be attending the conference below (click on the image) sponsored by Christian Ethics Today. This conference is being held on the campus of Baylor University at Truett Seminary.
The lineup is excellent. Baptist heroes such as James Dunn and Jimmy Allen will be speaking. Baylor's interim President David Garland will speak on Henlee Barnette. David Gushee will be in attendance speaking on "Sanctity of Life Issues" and presumably will take part in a paneling discussion titled "Is There An Emerging Evangelical Center?"

Tony Campolo is listed as the keynote speaker on Tuesday night and again on Wednesday morning with an address titled "Where Have All the Prophets Gone?"

Despite the excellent lineup, I find it a bit odd that there is not one single female participant listed. Zip. Zero.

The conference is titled "Red-Letter Christians, An Emerging Evangelical Center, And PUBLIC POLICY ISSUES."

EDIT: Suzii Paynter, director of the BGCT Christian Life Commission, is on the panel on Emerging Evangelicals, though not originally listed in the program.



Anonymous Karen G said...

What is a red letter Christian?

10:03 PM

Blogger Big Daddy Weave said...

Here's a link:


10:23 PM

Blogger Bart Barber said...

Karen G,

Drop the word "letter," think back to the 1960s, and you'll have your answer.


Just having a little fun here, Big Daddy.

7:05 AM

Anonymous karen g said...

Sounds essentially political -- with government action as its focus and gauge of proper Christian citizenship. Sounds familiar.

Politics is not what we're best at.

If we don't need Karl Rove or Dr. Dobsen to guide our vote and service, then do we need Tony Campolo or Jim Wallis to do so? I mean, organize away, it's a free country, but I thought that was one of the main criticisms aimed at the religious right -- organized Christian political action which tended to align with one political party.

1:04 PM

Anonymous karen g said...

It's hard to leave this one alone.

From press releases and website pages of Red Letter Christians:

"Red Letter Christians - Christian communicators taking Jesus' words seriously." Does that mean that other Christian communicators don't?

"The goal of the group is to advance the message that our faith cannot be reduced to only two hot button social issues - abortion and homosexuality."

I've never bought that stereotype, have you? Do you know a lot of Christians who are actually like that? In my community, many theologically and socially conservative folks -- possibly the much-maligned religious right -- give their lives and resources to the poor and voiceless. They run Christian help agencies, nonprofits, donation centers, life turn-around ministries, pregnancy help centers; they adopt children; they teach and volunteer in low income schools, providing health screenings, lead drug-recovery groups, do Christian counseling and so on.

It's kind of insulting to tell these servants that they're captive to wedge issues and power politics. It's not even true. If Red Letter Christians don't want to be stereotyped, why start by stereotyping conservatives?

Perhaps RLC is a course-correction, a "hear us, too," which ironically is how the Moral Majority and Christian Coalition started out. Voter registration, voter guides, a grass-roots organization of 7,000 progressive clergy, claiming a better understanding of Jesus' words, I don't know, it tends to sound like the pot and kettle. 'Nuff said.

7:43 AM

Anonymous Jeremy said...

Karen G,

I don't think Red Letter Christians' claim that they take Jesus' words seriously is directed at anyone in particular. I think they do recognize that many of us latch on to certain sayings of Jesus or scripture while simultaneously ignoring certain others.

As far as the abortion/homosexual hot-button issue stereotype - there is a large degree of truth in it, especially where I reside in the South. Most conservative Christians I encounter, when learning that I vote democrat most of the time, ask "Well...you are pro-life, AREN'T YOU?" And I have heard the claim "I will never vote for someone who is Pro-Choice" more times than I can remember. So as much as I truly think these people care about other social issues, abortion is the trump card in the voting process.

That is my experience. I can't speak for everyone.

9:19 AM

Anonymous Stephen Fox said...

Karen G:

I don't know if you are a Baylor Student or not, but if you are, go to the Library there and Read the Chapter the Rove Era in Garry Wills American Christianities and then read several chapters in Randall Balmer's Thy Kingdom Come and Get a Grip;
For God's sake get a clue

2:43 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a middle aged attorney -- just making a personal observation about the swing of the pendulum. But I'll be glad to read up.

"Catholic social doctrine as I was taught it is, you take care of people who need the help the most."

- Joe Biden for Obama's tax plan

4:18 PM


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