IRD: Health care

by Ruth Moon

In an e-mail, Mark Tooley berated religious groups that supported health care reform, saying “Religious Left activists primarily see religion as an organizing tool for extinguishing private alternatives to state control of health care and virtually every other facet of human life.”

IRD: Health care and immigration

by Ruth Moon

IRD’s Mark Tooley mentioned the “buyer’s remorse” Tony Campolo and other Christian leaders seem to have over Obama’s presidency (and health care specifically).

“Like others, Campolo and the evangelical left saw Obama as their Rorschach candidate, and now express frustration that he has been more faithful to his abortion rights voting record than to their fictional portrayal of him,” Tooley said in the e-mail. “Voices on the evangelical left have seemed all too willing to downplay clear Christian moral teaching in order to join Obama’s push for bigger government.”

IRD Religious Liberty Director Faith McDonnell commented on a Muslim-Christian summit in Washington, D.C. earlier this month, expressing “concerns that the summit will be an exercise in capitulation and appeasement to Islamists.”

The IRD also commented on Washington, D.C.’s recent decision to allow same-sex marriage and fear that Catholic Charities would lose government funding over the issue: “All those who value their religious freedom should be up in arms at this attempted coercion of consciences. If Catholics are not allowed to be Catholic, none of us can rest secure in our liberty.”

The IRD also disapproved of an upcoming march in Washington, D.C. intended to advocate for “eventual amnesty and largely open borders under the banner of Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR).”

“Divine commands for fairness and justice do not automatically equal liberalized immigration, any more than they equate to socialized medicine, global warming alarmism, or American disarmament,” the IRD said in an e-mail. “The religious left, uncomfortable with the theology and moral teachings of its own traditions, prefers the supposed clarity and liberation of left-wing activism.”

IRD: “Guilt-laden spectacle” anti-American

by Ruth Moon

Examining U.S. war crimes in a “guilt-laden spectacle” (in New York City next month) is “anti-American.”

Tooley says in an e-mail update that the religious left has “buyer’s remorse” over supporting President Obama, and is angry over abortion funding (and lack of it) in the health care plan.

IRD: Don’t ignore persecuted Christians

by Ruth Moon

The IRD’s Faith McDonnell said the World Evangelical Alliance should not have ignored China’s persecuted church when it visited the country recently. “We cannot do service to one part of the Body of Christ at the cost of doing disservice to another,” McDonnell said. “We find it staggering that there was no acknowledgment of the 80 million or more Chinese house church Christians or what they face from the Chinese government.”

Mark Tooley commented on climate issues during the Copenhagen summit in December.

“Harsh prophecies of climate catastrophe need to be weighed against the impact on still-developing nations. Environmental fears should not excuse perpetuating poverty,” he said. “There is much to celebrate in the past generation: America and other Western nations now have cleaner water, air and land. How can we help other nations work for both a clean environment and economic growth without peddling apocalyptic fears?”

Southern Sudan’s persecuted Christians need attention and help as much as those suffering in Darfur.

IRD: Episcopal Church wrong

by Ruth Moon

In an e-mail update, Mark Tooley takes to task the Episcopal Church for approving same-sex marriage. He says:

Christians and Jews traditionally have believed that marriage as man and woman was part of God’s original order of creation.  But supposedly trendy church officials think that secular culture should redefine for the Church what marriage actually is.   These faddish church prelates, striving to be relevant, always end up making themselves, and their churches, irrelevant, as they float endlessly with the tide, unmoored to any anchor.

Mary Glasspool “has unapologetically taken sexual expression outside of the God-ordained boundary of Holy Matrimony,” IRD’s Jeff Walton said in an e-mail. “In the view of the wider Anglican Communion, this practice makes her unqualified to serve in the role of a bishop.”

IRD: Abortion, health care and the church

by Ruth Moon

In an e-mail update, Mark Tooley asks for donations “to ensure that … radical church lobbies in Washington, D.C. do NOT successfully persuade Congress and the media that they speak for millions of churchgoers” about government-funded abortion.

Tooley takes issue with a new report by a Massachusetts advocacy group which states  that U.S. Christians are manipulating African Christians to believe homosexuality is wrong. He also says the U.S. should not withdraw quickly from Afghanistan, calling that “unrealistic pacifism.”

In response to the United Methodist denomination and others calling for abortion coverage in the health care bill, Tooley said:

For the mostly new Evangelical Left and the old Religious Left, government-imposed universal health care is a long-time totem for which their activists have toiled across years and decades. Politically liberal evangelicals who still are pro-life, or who at least care about gathering support from the majority of evangelicals who are, remain anxious to preserve Stupak-Pitts.

The old Religious Left, which has enthusiastically supported unrestricted abortion since the 1960s, sees the proposed abortion funding restriction in Obamacare as a nightmarish stain upon their utopian dream of socialized medicine.

United Methodism officially opposes partial-birth abortions and abortions for gender-selection or birth control. But the ultra-liberal United Methodist Capitol Hill lobby office interprets the stance as supporting unrestricted abortion rights.

Evangelical Left activists like Jim Wallis desperately want Obamacare – even if it entails abortion restrictions – and see Stupak-Pitts as a sweetener for their constituency. Hard-line old Religious Leftists portray Stupak-Pitts as an outrageous accommodation of theocracy.

Both Evangelical Left and Religious Left are united in their messianic hopes for socialized health care and almost certainly will support Obamacare ultimately in any form.

IRD: Health care and gay marriage

by Ruth Moon

e-mail updates:

Mark Tooley announced he signed the Manhattan Declaration last week. He also noted that several mainline church groups (which often behave “appallingly”) endorsed the health care initiative in the Senate last week.

An upcoming same-sex marriage ruling in Washington, D.C. could result in Catholic Charities losing city funding in the district.