Magazine article Church & State

Head of White House 'Faith-Based' Office Announces Departure

Magazine article Church & State

Head of White House 'Faith-Based' Office Announces Departure

Article excerpt

Joshua DuBois, head of the White House's Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships, stepped down from the position in early February.

President Barack Obama announced DuBois' departure while speaking at the National Prayer Breakfast Feb. 7.

"Every morning he sends me via email a daily meditation--a snippet of scripture for me to reflect on," Obama told attendees at the breakfast. "And it has meant the world to me."

DuBois, a Pentecostal minister, worked on Obama's first campaign in 2008 and helped organize then-candidate Obama's outreach to religious groups. After the election, he assumed directorship of the faith-based office, a holdover from the George W. Bush administration.

DuBois plans to teach at New York University and write a book based on the spiritual reflections he sent to Obama daily. He also plans to launch a new organization with Michael Wear, also a former White House staffer in the faith-based office, that will help organizations and local governments partner with faith-based organizations, Religion News Service reported.

In a column for CNN.com, DuBois described the new group, Values Partnerships, as a "social enterprise." He said it will "help public, private and nonprofit organizations bring to scale powerful, measurable partnerships with the faith community that solve big challenges, from improving public health to expanding financial literacy to reducing recidivism. We'll also help leaders in the church and faith-based nonprofits navigate the public square around them, based on our experiences over the years."

Added DuBois, "Finally, I'm looking forward to teaching, speaking and writing about life at the intersection of religion and politics, particularly focusing on how believers can live their faith powerfully in the world. Through trial and error, I have a few lessons to share on that point, and many still to learn. …

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