In this world of constant change, one thing remains absolutely predictable: the Wall Street Journal will never miss an opportunity to bash mainline Protestant churches. The paper has regularly printed harsh critiques of progressive churches and ecumenical organizations. Particularly mean-spirited have been its attacks on the World Council of Churches and the National Council of Churches—full of half truths and innuendo, forcing clergy to explain to their congregations what those organizations actually are and do. The newspaper’s editors seem to find particular joy in the challenges facing Episcopalians and Presbyterians.

Why this consistent, persistent hostility? Is it because progressive churches have kept alive the truth that the gospel of Jesus Christ has social, economic and political implications that often challenge the profound individualism of the Journal? Is it that followers of Jesus Christ, in gratitude for their individual salvation, often get together in these churches with other followers to try to make the world a little more reflective of the biblical view of peace and justice?

Many theological conservatives have now embraced mainline Protestants’ concern for gender equality, for protecting the environment and for reducing the widening gap between rich and poor. Evangelical preachers are now reminding people that Jesus talked a lot more about poverty than he did about sex. Evangelical churches are now including issues of peace and justice in their mission. But not the Wall Street Journal. Instead, the paper continues to repeat the same old worn-out complaints.