It's not what the headlines are highlighting, but Mitt Romney's 2010 tax return
includes one impressive fact: his charitable contributions amounted to
$7 million. I know, this hardly put him at risk of losing one of his houses
and ending up out on the street till his driver could pick him up and
take him to one of his other houses. Still, giving away almost a third
of your income is nothing to sneeze at.
It's rare for me to disagree with Mark Silk and rarer still for me to agree with Erick Erickson. But that's where I'm at when it comes to the politics of Rick Santorum's strong showing in Iowa on Tuesday.
If you want to read interesting on-the-ground reporting on the Occupy movement, you could do a lot worse than following Ezra Silk. The young writer--son of academic and religion blogger extraordinaire Mark Silk--has been traveling around to different protests and covering them from within.
"Better to be ruled by a wise Turk than a foolish Christian,” Martin Luther is alleged to have quipped. Whether or not he actually made this remark, the sentiment captures the paradoxical vision that Luther and many other Protestants have brought to politics. Yes, Christ is Lord of the political sphere as well as the spiritual sphere—Luther had no intention of denying that.
BobJonesIII, the chancellor of Bob Jones University, a conservative Christian school in Greenville, South Carolina, has endorsed former Massachusetts governor MittRomney for the Republican nomination for president. “As a Christian I am completely opposed to the doctrines of Mormonism,” Jones told the Greenville News October 16.
Like Mitt Romney, I’m a Mormon, and as with him my Mormonism seems to be a defining, make-or-break characteristic for many people I meet. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has made great strides in the past decade at improving its public image, partly as a result of an extensive and expensive PR effort.
In 1998, the SBC missions board distributed over 45,000 evangelistic kits titled “The Mormon Puzzle: Understanding and Witnessing to Latter-day Saints.” The kit included a video that depicted a typical Mormon family enjoying the weekly LDS ritual of “family home evening.” The commentator noted that the Mormon family “could be the family across the street—wonderful, law-abiding people who adore their children, instilling values we all love and cherish.” But, the commentator continued, this family would be “lost for eternity.” The message was that though Mormons may look clean and righteous on the outside, on the inside they are in the grip of dark forces.