Dobson Seeks Allies among Southern Baptists and Roman Catholics

Church & State, July 1998 | Go to article overview

Dobson Seeks Allies among Southern Baptists and Roman Catholics


Focus on the Family President James C. Dobson is expanding his efforts to draft new allies in his increasingly high profile religio-political crusade.

Dobson, a Colorado Springs-based radio counselor with a large following among evangelical Christians, has dramatically increased his political activity recently. Last May, Republican congressional leaders, in response to Dobson's public threats to leave the GOP, promised to start acting on his agenda.

Lately Dobson has been working to bring other religious groups into his movement. In June Dobson, a member of the Church of the Nazarene, spoke at the Southern Baptist Convention's meeting in Salt Lake City. He urged members of that denomination, which is already closely aligned with the Religious Right, to become even more political.

Christians "have hidden for far too long behind the phrase, `We don't deal with those issues because we're not political,'" Dobson said. "Folks, it is not political to kill babies. It is immoral to kill babies."

Charging that America is locked in a "civil war of values," Dobson praised the Southern Baptists for adding a family values section to their faith statement calling on women to submit to their husbands and condemning homosexuality.

"We simply must take a stand, and on that issue we will be vilified and we will be marginalized and we will be insulted," said Dobson. "But we answer to a higher authority. We have a responsibility."

Dobson charged that America is a "sick nation" plagued by "creeping moral relativism" that has "turned our value system upside down."

Meanwhile in New England, the Massachusetts Family Institute, a state affiliate of Focus on the Family, is teaming up with the Massachusetts Catholic Conference to pursue shared political goals. The National Catholic Register reported in June that the two groups have joined forces to oppose legal abortion, discourage divorce, promote abstinence-based sex education and work on other issues. …

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