If we are to successfully overcome polarization, we must first look deeply into its roots.
Economic inequality has increased, even inside congregations.
Why do so many congregations brand themselves as “progressive” or “conservative”? Isn’t a more diverse, heterogenous congregational identity preferable?
Congregations don’t take sides in elections, but they can never be neutral about moral issues. Especially in times of sharp disagreement, clergy and lay leaders face a hard dilemma: How can we speak politically with a religious voice?
Most Americans were surprised by the outcome of the November 8 election. More than 90% of Clinton supporters and a plurality of Trump supporters expected Clinton to emerge victorious. Congregational leaders faced a dilemma the following weekend. How does one speak both to those who were celebrating and those who were grieving?
In what is certainly the strangest U.S. presidential election since I first voted in 1976, the polarized national political environment is now seeping into our local congregations. Pastors, priests and rabbis have reported pressure from some congregants to “speak to the issues!” and from others to “stay away from politics!” Many congregational leaders are also …
Congregations, like all organizations, are arenas for political activity. While we tend to think of politics as pertaining to governmental entities, the phrase “workplace politics” communicates the reality that political activities occur in multiple organizational settings. Power and authority are negotiated and contested in every organization, thus political activity is also endemic in every organization.