President-elect Barack Obama says that the historically black church moved him from a skeptic to a believer.
He has spoken appreciatively of its vibrant worship, written about how the black church experience has moved him to tears. And he has credited black congregations for their work in helping the powerless and in speaking truth to power.
The hope I am holding onto for Obama’s leadership is the depth and candor of his Philadelphia speech on race and the fact that his most fundamental racial identity seems to be his being biracial. He represents a new generation of children of interracial families who have experienced the rich gifts and real challenges of finding intimacy across the divide, who refuse to choose between the cultures of their two parents. They want the best of both, see the flaws of self-sufficiency and are willing to lose some friends along the way for the sake of something better than the old categories of who “my people” are. —Chris Rice
It’s the day after the election, and I am clicking around on one of the many interactive maps of the nation available on the Internet. I’ve found one that shows, in reds and blues, how every single county in the nation voted. You click on a state and the data for each county appear, down to the very last vote.
The election of Barack Obama offers hope that religion will play a more constructive role in the public arena rather than the largely divisive role it has played in recent years. One sign of hope is that Obama was able to narrow the Democrats’ so-called God gap.
Four students at George Fox University in Newberg, Oregon, confessed to hanging an effigy of Senator Barack Obama from a tree on campus and were suspended for up to a year, school officials announced September 30. The students’ names were not released.
Catholic legal scholar Nicholas Cafardi, who recently endorsed Senator Barack Obama for president, has resigned as a trustee of Franciscan University of Steubenville in Ohio, an outpost of conservative Catholicism.
An expert in civil and canon law, Cafardi said he quit the school’s board voluntarily.