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Pastors serve their parishioners' spiritual needs and often address community and social issues, including politics. While much is known about how the public views politics, what about pastoral opinion? Based on two recent surveys of LCMS pastors, the authors examine how these men view politics and government today and the relationship between church and state. Lutheran Pastors and Politics uses extant literature to explain a theory of LCMS clergy involvement in the political realm, test the theory against data gathered through two surveys, and comment on findings in light of an American society that is morally challenged and has little faith and trust in the governmental system. The authors will seek to discover the attitudes toward politics held by LCMS clergy and what implications these attitudes have for pastors' earthly ministries, especially in light of the ways they may overtly or subtly influence parishioners' political views.
Based on recent surveys, the authors of this book explore the political opinions and civic activity of clergy in the LCMS. Beginning with a survey of Lutheran two-kingdom theology and its application in various U.S. Lutheran denominations, Walz and Montreal move to specific data related to LCMS pastoral involvement in the political process. The authors find that while theologically and politically conservative, and generally reluctant to become embroiled in political situations, LCMS clergy are active as private citizens. Moreover, a large number of pastors desire to become more involved politically. Numerous tables communicate a wealth of data, and the discussion interacts with contemporary political issues from abortion to 9/11 to presidential scandals. This book offers an analysis of the political views of pastors and studies how those views influence ministries and congregations.
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