Politics in the Parish is the first empirical examination of the role Catholic clergy play in shaping the political views of their congregations. Gregory Allen Smith draws from recent scholarship on political communication, and the comprehensive Notre Dame Study of Parish Life, as well as case studies he conducted in nine parishes in the mid-Atlantic region, to investigate the extent to which and the circumstances under which Catholic priests are influential in shaping the politics of their parishioners.
Smith is able to verify that clergy do exercise political influence, but he makes clear that such influence is likely to be nuanced, limited in magnitude, and exercised indirectly by shaping parishioner religious attitudes that in turn affect political behavior. He shows that the messages that priests deliver vary widely, even radically, from parish to parish and priest to priest. Consequently, he warns that scholars should exercise caution when making any global assumptions about the political influence that Catholic clergy affect upon their congregations.
Gregory Allen Smith is a research fellow at the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, where he contributes to the Forum's survey research efforts. In 2006 he earned the Aaron Wildavsky Award for the best dissertation in religion and politics, awarded by the Religion and Politics section of the American Political Science Association.
Human beings have never had it better than we have it now in the West. So why are we on the verge of throwing it all away?
In 2016, New York Times bestselling author Ben Shapiro spoke at the University of California–Berkeley. Hundreds of police officers were required to protect his speech. What was so frightening about Shapiro? He came to argue that Western civilization is in the midst of a crisis of purpose and ideas; that we have let grievances replace our sense of community and political expediency limit our individual rights; that we are teaching our kids that their emotions matter more than rational debate; and that the only meaning in life is arbitrary and subjective.
As a society, we are forgetting that almost everything great that has ever happened in history happened because of people who believed in both Judeo-Christian values and in the Greek-born power of reason. In The Right Side of History, Shapiro sprints through more than 3,500 years, dozens of philosophers, and the thicket of modern politics to show how our freedoms are built upon the twin notions that every human being is made in God’s image and that human beings were created with reason capable of exploring God’s world.
We can thank these values for the birth of science, the dream of progress, human rights, prosperity, peace, and artistic beauty. Jerusalem and Athens built America, ended slavery, defeated the Nazis and the Communists, lifted billions from poverty, and gave billions more spiritual purpose. Jerusalem and Athens built America, ended slavery, defeated the Nazis and the Communists, lifted billions from poverty, and gave billions more spiritual purpose.
Yet we are in the process of abandoning Judeo-Christian values and Greek natural law, watching our civilization collapse into age-old tribalism, individualistic hedonism, and moral subjectivism. We believe we can satisfy ourselves with intersectionality, scientific materialism, progressive politics, authoritarian governance, or nationalistic solidarity.
The West is special, and in The Right Side of History, Ben Shapiro bravely explains how we have lost sight of the moral purpose that drives each of us to be better, the sacred duty to work together for the greater good,.
Phil Robertson, patriarch of A&E’s Duck Dynasty and one of the most recognized voices of conservative Christianity in America, believes that little by little, generation by generation, America has allowed the lines of morality, decency, and virtue to be erased. Our values have disappeared as we began to believe lies—such as that God is dead, truth is relative, and unity is impossible—that have brought discord, division and protest. But Phil also believes that things can change.
Writing with captivating storytelling and unflinching honesty, Phil shows how to make America a God-honoring nation once more: by dropping the ten central lies that rule our day, includingGod is deadThere is no DevilTruth is relativeSex is for self-gratification
Many people today find that their prayers don’t “work.” And like a broken cell phone, DVD player, or TV remote, they throw prayer out as unnecessary “clutter” in their busy lives. Anne Graham Lotz has found that while prayer does work, sometimes the “pray-ers” don’t. So she has turned to the prophet Daniel for help.
The Daniel Prayer is born deep within your soul, erupts through your heart, and pours out on your lips, words created by and infused with the Spirit of God quivering with spiritual electricity. It’s really not an everyday type of prayer. It’s a prayer birthed under pressure. Heartache. Grief. Desperation. It can be triggered by a sudden revelation of hope. An answer to prayer, a promise freshly received, a miracle that lies just over the horizon.
Join Anne in a thrilling discovery of prayer that really works.
For extended study into The Daniel Prayer message, Anne has also created The Daniel Prayer video study and study guide. Available now.