Can Churches Save America by Joseph Shapiro and Andrea Wright
When reading Joseph Shapiro and Andrea Wright’s article, Can Churches Save America, I couldn’t help but to feel compelled to write about this. The article touched on how the government is an institution that is impersonal to those who are seeking help to reestablish themselves in society, yet the most churches are caring and plant their programs in a strong-grounded religious foundation. The same goes for programs that are in our prison systems. Although churches may not be able to totally replace the aides that the government supplies for its citizens, it plays an important part in placing needed morals back into our society.For some time, I have watched the media address social and moral issues. For some time, I have been bothered by what I see. The issues themselves are troubling, but that is not what distresses me. We must address the current problems of society if the church is to fulfill its role, so it doesn’t trouble me that the media addresses these issues. What they say about social issues doesn’t bother me, either. It is usually excellent. It’s what they don’t say that disturbs me.For example, a couple of months ago I checked a dozen or so articles and editorials on social and moral problems in four issues of Christianity Today. Most of the articles described a social or moral problem, analyzed it from the perspective of Christian values and ethics, and presented several specific things we can do to address the problem. The perspectives were very good. The ideas for action were excellent, ranging from ways of effectively pressuring politicians to ways of demonstrating to people that their position is wrong without arguing.From the emphasis of these articles (and broadcasts), however, I subtly reach a larger conclusion: “That’s all there is to it; if enough of us look at these issues correctly and do these things in response, we can eliminate these problems.” I am not claiming that the authors intended for me to reach this conclusion, or that they believe it. Nevertheless, it is what I usually sense from these articles. Through repeated emphasis, my focus drifts (perhaps unconsciously) to the battlefields of moral persuasion and political action.A Porsche without an engine may look impressive, but it won’t go anywhere.