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DC Episcopal church’s pointed political commentary

DC Episcopal church’s pointed political commentary

An Episcopal parish in Washington, DC has launched a banner campaign in an attempt to express what they describe as a progressive Christian perspective that is often overlooked.

 

The Rev. Alex Dyer, the priest in charge of the 126-year-old parish, is the one who designed the banner campaign. He told HuffPost that his congregation saw the signs as an “opportunity to give voice to a side of Christianity that many people may not associate with Christianity.”

“There are many people who think Christians are close-minded, judgmental, and oppose science,” he said. “This is not the people in the congregation or many congregations around the country.”

 

He believes the signs capture the feelings of a lot of people in D.C. about the state of American politics.

“We are a very progressive church in a very progressive city,”

 

The banners have an image of Jesus with his face in his hand, colloquially known as a “faithpalm,” with a brief statement.  The statements include;

  • Yes, science is real
  • The President said what?
  • I never said I hated anyone m,
  • What is it with America and guns?

 

The campaign has not been without its critics who question to what extent faith should have a partisan political expression.  Though when Local TV Reporter Evan Koslof asked whether religion should embrace political messages, most responded positively.

 

 

In response Dyer has said that avoiding politics isn’t a possibility for a progressive Christian community in DC and noted that the congregation has also participated in direct action such as marches, protests, and vigils.

“The hope is that people will walk by and think about things a little differently,” Dyer said of his banners. “It will remind people of a God who loves them and feels their frustration.”

“I know there are Christians out there who are definitely in line with what our president is doing, but there is also a voice in Christianity that says this is not in line and this is not OK.”

 

Additional banners are planned touching on immigration and the proposed border wall.

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Ted Copland

I thought these were right on target, helped people think, and I used them as an illustration for an Advent II sermon to highlight things Isaiah or John the Baptist might ‘cry out’ about in 2017. Got positive results from congregation.

Joshua Dollins

I consider myself an anglican/episcopalian baptised and a member of a local church. That said I take issue with things like this I understand why these things happen these stances are taken but the presentation seems a bit… rude.

Cara Spaccarelli

There is a strong element of self-righteousness suggested in these signs. I don’t see in Scripture where Jesus ever affirms someone’s self-righteousness – in fact, Jesus is almost always challenging his followers and questioners alike. Are these signs challenging progressive Christians or progressive DC residents in any way to live more faithfully? Or just to think they they are because they hold “right” beliefs?

Prof Christopher Seitz

I am trying to imagine what it would be like to be so confident you knew what the exalted Lord thought about your own political positions. And then buy billboard space and announce it.

Kenneth Knapp

I keep my politics to myself because I wouldn’t want my politics to be a stumbling block to someone else’s faith. I guess that isn’t a problem for them.

Sharon

My hope is my actions and affirmation reveal my values extending good will and peace to everyone…

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