Public Faith is a new organization for “Christians who share a commitment to orthodox Christian faith and a belief in working toward the common good through politics towards a just and flourishing society.” One of the founding members is Michael Wear, the Founder of Public Square Strategies LLC, and the author of the forthcoming book Reclaiming Hope: Lessons Learned in the Obama White House About the Future of Faith in America. Millennial editor Robert Christian interviewed Wear on Public Faith:
How did Public Faith come together, and what was the impetus for creating it?
Public Faith came together as a result of a shared sense that there is a broad swath of Christians out there who do not feel represented in our politics–they feel alone. And yet they are not content to withdraw from politics. They’re looking for solidarity with other faithful Christians who agree on core implications of Christian teaching for our politics, and to join their voices with others to influence our politics. This is very much the concrete reality of how Alan Noble and I started to discuss the idea of Public Faith. As we developed the idea we consulted with others, many of whom are our Founding Members, and decided this was a key moment to step out and offer a different vision of politics in what is a very cynical environment.
The mission statement calls for strengthening efforts to combat poverty and advance human rights around the world. With ‘America First’ and similar nationalistic and isolationist sentiments seemingly on the rise, why it is important for Christians to stand up for these types of global efforts?
As Christians, we recognize the dignity of every human being, not just Americans. We have been blessed as a people and as a nation with great resources and a great responsibility comes with that. We have an obligation as individuals, through our churches and charities, and yes, through our politics, to advocate for and come to the aid of those who are suffering. I’d also just add that as people like Michael Gerson, Brian Grim, and former USAID Administrator Raj Shah have so persuasively pointed out, global poverty and human rights violations have real economic and national security implications for our nation that require our attention.
In most of the world, climate change is not a partisan or ideologically divisive issue, like it is in the United States. Is there a role for Christians to play in breaking the deadlock on this issue here in the US?
Of course there is, and we can do this by offering a narrative that affirms neither the narrative of complacency on one side, nor the narrative of scarcity and materialism that is represented by others in this conversation. This world is God’s, He made it, and we have a responsibility to be good stewards of it. In other parts of the world, climate change is not partisan because its consequences are so apparent and threatening. Read More