Tuesday, April 29, 2008

STRAIGHT FROM THE Press Conference.. yes, that one!

Here I am in Washington, DC... meeting with leaders of local affiliates of The Interfaith Alliance, who've gathered from across the country to share ideas and to learn. If you don't know about The Interfaith Alliance, you should! Our own Denny Davidoff has been a leader at the national level, and Rev. Galen Giungrich sits on the National Board. www.interfaithalliance.org

Even better, we get to spend a bit of time with Rev. Welton Gaddy, who is doing an amazing job here in Washington as well as on his weekly radio show (listen online... www.stateofbelief.com )
at protecting religion from government AND government from religion! But Welton hadn't slept well. That's because he spent yesterday at the Press Conference that Rev. Jeremiah Wright gave, and last evening at a related prayer service. He's concerned.

What Welton Gaddy is concerned about concerns me too. His words were:The chasm between Jeremiah Wright & his supporters & the working press is Grand Canyon wide. Jeremiah Wright is more right than wrong. The working press does not understand religion in America. They certainly do not understand the prophetic tradition in Judaism and Christianity.

He quoted another attender at Press Conference, who said:

“We are caught up in an epistemology of ignorance.” Indeed!

He's worried that 1) new voters who have come into the political process will give up if Obama fails and 2)if Obama succeeds, expectations of these new voters may be unrealistic. But he's also concerned that if Obama does not get the nomination, resentment will be enormous. I agree.

As we ended the conversation, he was considering The Interfaith Alliance's response to all of this. I understand that he plans to address it comprehensively on the radio program this week.

The Interfaith Alliance has been a large part of my ministry and my community witness the past 8 years. I am so proud to be a part of this organization and to help advance their goals. I admire the integrity, commitment, and passion of Welton Gaddy and my colleagues in this work. I am delighted that he seems deeply committed to using the resources and energies of his organization to address the deepening and alarming racial divide that has been exposed by all of this. I hope every leader and organization of conscience does the same. That will make some of it, at least, bear fruit.

Here are some pictures from our Interfaith Alliance of the Bluegrass.