SHOULD PASTORS preach politics from the pulpit? Or should houses of worship be kept rigorously politics-free?
Compelling arguments can be made both ways.
On the one hand, it is the role of religious leaders and churches to guide and instruct their flocks — to articulate the spiritual values that believers are expected to uphold and to show how those values apply in every area of life. Clergy at churches, synagogues, and mosques have always spoken out on issues affecting their worshipers and the larger society. Many of the most transformative causes in American history — independence from England, the struggle against slavery, opposition to abortion, the civil rights movement — were shaped by the involvement of religious leaders.
On the other hand, millions of Americans believe strongly that a house of worship is no place for politics, and that clergy trivialize the word of God by trying to make it fit a partisan template. . . .