Pence Reaches Out to Evangelicals. Not All of Them Reach Back.

The vice president’s appearance at a large convention of evangelical pastors drew effusive praise from many attendees, but others complained it was overtly political.

Comments: 63

  1. I served as a Parish Nurse in a church.

    Mike Pence is far from what I would include in my faith.

    Seriously, perhaps the country should start praying that people think long and hard about what religion and faith is meant to be. Mike Pence does not represent that.

  2. Who cares what faith and religion mean?
    As long as they do not interfere with politics, you give it the meaning you want.

  3. As scared as I am of Mr. Trump, Mr. Pence scares me as much or more.

    Anyone who leads with their religion as their number one allegiance does not belong in a government that supposedly believes in the separation of church/synagogue, mosque, etc. and state.

  4. Pence is frightening. I really don’t know any other way to describe him.

  5. Does Pence imply that if the hostages were not "Christian", trump would not "have freed" them? "Christian" is a designation being thrown around too often in place of "human", "good", and "deserving".

  6. I thought the same. He identified them by their faith not as Americans. Very telling.

  7. It would also have been something if Pence had been questioned how Trump has "a special bond' with and trusts Kim Jong Un, who won't allow open expression of Christianity.
    Talk about wanting it both ways!

  8. I noticed that, too.

  9. Mike "Christian First" Pence should not be allowed to define a faith, and certainly neither should his boss. We need to keep hearing those Christian voices who are morally offended by Trump's dignifying of white supremacists as "very fine people," those who cannot bide by his punitive immigration policies, his indifference to the poor, his unkind behavior, his dishonesty, his treatment of women, his support of the gun lobby, etc...
    Pence, like Trump, represents a far right political agenda, not a faith group. Jesus would have sized them up as he did the money changers he expelled out of temple.

  10. What happened to the separation of church and state?? It was also pretty awful to hear both the AG and Sarah Huckabee Sanders quote the Bible in recent pronouncements. I am worried about the future of this country when the Constitution is flouted more and more each day.

  11. What a chilling mix of church and state.

    Just absolutely halting.

  12. One cannot simultaneously claim to espouse Christian values and support the Trump Administration. I can't think of anyone who has done more damage to evangelism than Trump and his supporters. It doesn't bother me if others disagree with that assessment, because I don't much matter. We will all have a chance to explain ourselves on Judgment Day to those who do.

  13. I couldn't agree more.

  14. Christian values of today and the past too are the values that Trump and his supporters preach. If they cared about their fellow man they wouldn't back him even if it meant that he wouldn't do their bidding. All the care about is pushing their agenda on everyone.

  15. “...complaints that a religious event was being used for political gain.” Is this rich or what?

    The Southern Baptist Convention is the nation’s leading purveyor of the theory that there should be no wall that separates the state from the church.

    Since Donald Trump was an off-the-wall candidate, evangelical “Christians” have, like crusaders, followed the strict and unforgiving promptings of their “leaders” in their zealous and unrelenting march toward an America that promises that, as we are “under one flag, so shall we be under one God.”

    The vice-president, who tells anyone within earshot that he’s “a Christian, a conservative and a Republican—in that order,” leans hard on the idea that the president is fighting for the ideals that “make America great.” Of course, if that means the forcible separation of (brown) children from their parents along the border, well, that’s better quietly discussed at another time. Far more important to the evangelical “Christians” is the state-enforced subjugation of women’s bodies and their family decisions.

    This hypocritical, fake religiosity and patriotism are two of the stakes that hold up the huge tent of this fraudulent right-wing coalition that has room enough only for white men and their meek, obedient “little women.” Their president, whom they adore, in spite of his serial marriages and adulterous roaming, promises to “do the right thing” and he trots out his vice-president to bring them the good news, the gospel according to Trump.

  16. VP Pence assuring Evangelicals at the Southern Baptist conference that the Trump administration is putting their desires front and center is a clear violation of his Oath of Office vowing to uphold the Constitution of the United States.

    I suggest VP Pence reread the entire document and pay particular attention to the First Amendment to the Constitution.

  17. The only thing that can be said about this article is, thank God that there are still Evangelicals that have a sense of morals and ethics left in them.

  18. Hail to the Golden Calf!

  19. Willful ignorance.

    Willful blindness.

    Willful denial of what being a Christian truly means.

    That's how I see the evangelical leaders and followers.

    If they were truly Christian, they never would have voted for Trump.

    Even before the election, Trump admitted to grabbing and assaulting women. For fun. Because he couldn't resist.

    Plumbers and electricians had sued him by the thousands for non-payment. He cheated students at Trump University. He dodged Vietnam five times through lies and privilege. He was a known racist. He had been married three times, cheated on all three wives.

    They knew that Trump was a pathological liar. He attacked people. He was vulgar and crude, he was greedy and there is no evidence of charitable giving.

    These are not qualities (supposedly) that Christianity supports.

    Since then, Trump has embraced Putin, a man who invaded Crimea and who supports Assad, a mass murderer.

    Jesus was against murder.

    Putin organized the interference in our election - which handed Trump the win. That's cheating. Trump loves Putin because of it.

    He denies that global warning exists and actively works to dismantle our environmental protections.

    We are to protect the earth.

    Trump tried as hard as he could to take away healthcare from Americans - most especially the poor. That's against Christ's teachings.

    Trump is no Christian and I don't think the "leaders" of the evangelical movement are either.

    Frankly, they make me sick.

  20. I’d rather a moral non-theist than someone who trumpets their unnatural affinity for this form of “Christianity”.

  21. I thought there was supposed to be the separation of Church and State, yet under Trump they are closely linked to favour Evangelical Christians and their agenda?

  22. What ever happened to the separation of church and state?

  23. It seems that this gathering of the righteous right is prepared to fault Mike Pence for the administration’s unkind immigration policies. However, the major push back is coming from a few minority religious leaders and not a majority of the evangelical bloc that strongly supports the president. These religious leaders would certainly not show up or embarrass the president and openly disrespect him the way they did Pence. Pence does not get a mulligan but the president does. That's hypocrisy.

  24. I wonder if maybe that's not only because of Pence and Trump's respective amounts of power, but also because Pence has defined himself all along as a Christian and Trump hasn't even shown any religiosity. Remember how Trump began a prayer breakfast last year by talking about "The Apprentice" ratings?! Maybe they see Trump as simply a means to a political end, not as someone who would speak their language.

  25. Yes, especially since Pence was chosen by God to do whatever it is he does. Really!

  26. With the latest dire warning from the Pope on melting ice and Trumps campaign/charity corruption why would a so called religious group support a crook? If the Evangelicals support harming our environment then they are harming humanity. They might as well say they are for the devil not for what God wants hand the environment to younger generations in good shape.

  27. Waiting for IRS/Congress to revoke tax-exempt status for the Southern Baptist Church.

    Has Pence ever read the Constitution? Is he aware of how he damaged the Southern Baptist Convention?

  28. It’s telling that Pence had to invite himself to speak at the SBC.

  29. Yes, Pence and his boss must have worried that attendees might finally remember (and follow) the instruction, “Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s and unto God the things that are God’s.” (Mat. 22:17-21)

  30. If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person's religion is worthless. [James 1:26 ESV]

  31. Evangelicals are making an error by not courting Pence, not returning the love he has for them, because he is the next president of this country. This may not be something a lot of republicans want, but this is something democrats are trying very hard to ensure (without so intending).

    Pence is firmly on their side. If what occurred is political theater, and well rehearsed, then fine. But hell hath no fury like a politician scorned. Pence will carry all evangelicals in 2020, but he may not forgive nor forget this slight done to him by current leaders. While evangelical voters are key to winning in America, their leaders are highly expendable.

  32. Rape Mother Earth, rape American democracy with voter suppression and Kremlin campaign assistance, try to rip healthcare away from tens of millions, paint the toenails of the rich and...of course..... 'praise the Lord' and vote for the Trumpian anti-Christ.

    Jesus was a democratic socialist who would throw up all over these radical reactionary religious Republican frauds.

    "There's a special place in hell", alright.

  33. Separation of Church and State. Maybe we need to impeach Pence. He is just such a mouthpiece for a radical religious front, bent on changing our American Way of life.
    Such a rant, and I apologize for that, but haven’t we as a country gone astray more than once due to the influence of this group? Prohibition was an excellent example.
    Christianity is a religion. These “fundamentalists” are extremely political, hiding as devout believers and in opposition to our Constitutional history.

  34. An honest headline & an honest lead would have told us that a handful of African-American evangelicals of the Southern Baptist Convention opposed the speech by Vice President Pence, but the white evangelicals of the Southern Baptist Convention were more than happy to cheer him to the rafters.

    An honest story would have made it clear that the white evangelicals of the Southern Baptist Convention will tolerate every kind of evil imaginable from Trump & Pence so long as Trump & Pence help them achieve their bigoted, twisted, Hobby Lobby notion of "religious freedom."

  35. VP Pence is so blindly obedient and loyal to the president that he speaks proudly about his accomplishments, but is silent about the bad things he says or does. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said that our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matters. Does a person's values, integrity, morals, ethics, and humanity matter any more? As a Christian, I know that these are the virtues and characteristics that Jesus exhorts for his shepherds and leaders. It seems that evangelicals are turning a blind eye to Trump's sinfulness and inhumanity because he's giving them the key to the White House (and to the World). I'm amazed how blind (political) so many of our evangelical Christians have become since the ascension of Trump. It's almost as if they worship and adore him. In Matthew chapter 23, Jesus admonished the religious leaders for their guile and hypocrisy. In verse 24, Jesus calls them out as being blind guides who strain for gnats and swallow camels. Rev. Billy Graham understood the toxic brew of mixing evangelism with politics.

  36. It is nice to see that some of these evangelicals are taking their lessons to heart and eschewing Trump, Pence, and members of his administration particularly in light of the less than divine act of separating children and infants from their parents -- hardly something any thinking adult, let alone religious adult should accept.

    While we are a nation of laws, we have a very specific law related to people coming to our shores and asking for asylum based on a justified belief that their life back home could lead to death. It is this administration that has chosen to separate these children as a way to send a message to other seeking asylum.

    It is religious people who I would expect to be the ones showing grace and understanding for these migrants, after all, Mary and Joseph were homeless seeking a place to bear their child.

    Instead, the Trump administration has it all turned around telling us that these people are evil and do not deserve our pity. I could use a number of quotes from the bible to make my point, but my hope is that this trend picks up and that evangelicals do not continue to give Trump and Pence a pass simply because their own desires are being granted. Remember that service to the poor provides a greater chance of entry into heaven than selling your soul to a man who believes that ripping infants apart from their parents, similar to what was done in Germany during the 1930s is an act of righteousness.

  37. He left out the part about separating families that appeal to us for asylum. He failed to mention the DACA kids....and so much more.

  38. Evangelicals that support Trump are either easily fooled or are not Christian. How can people who call themselves Christian support someone whose behavior is not Christian. Seems to me if the devil were in charge, he would act like Trump and say "I support whatever you want", just to get your vote. A true Christian is one speaks truth from the heart and acts in a manner that demonstrates his love for those less fortunate than him, and this is not Trump.

    The fact that Pence is a spokes person for Trump negates his Christian claims just by association.

  39. I don't remember that the oath of office includes upholding the beliefs and priorities of any religious group.

  40. I remember, Kathleen.

    "I, Mike Pence, do solemnly swear that I will support and defend a perverted interpretation of the Holy Christian Bible against all secular law; that I will mock Christ by ripping healthcare away from the poor and by painting the toenails of the rich; I take this obligation freely, without any regard for the non-rich; and I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me, Robber Barons, Reverse Robin Hoods and Republicans "

  41. There's one (at least) truly good Evangelical Christian group. Google "repairers of the breach" to learn about it - and to be uplifted a bit in these remarkably un-Christian times. You can also google "Moral Mondays." The two are related.

  42. Mike Pence is surrounded by moral degenerate multiple married men like Donald Trump, Steve Mnuchin, Wilbur Ross ,Larry Kudlow and Rudy Giuliani who have three wives and counting a piece. Pence is living and lying with sinners by nature and nurture who seem beyond any regret and redemption.

  43. OOOOPS----Jesus surrounded himself with sinners, the downtrodden, the persecuted, and the poor--but as most people know, he did so to lead them to a better path and new life.

    I have no doubt Jesus is leading Hondurans and Venezuelans to our borders, but the Devil is refusing them sanctuary.

    Blackmamba, you were alluding to the several anti-Christ demons, of course....The birds of a feather stick it to as many as they can destroy. God help us all.

  44. When I see Mike Pence speaking to these groups it reminds me of Iran's Sayyid Ali Hosseini Khamenei. Both of these men are religious fanatics and both profess that God blesses their political leanings and actions – not matter how damaging they are to the environment, women, outsiders, or those with different beliefs.

    It is a sad day when powerful men have to justify their twisted world views by claiming God is on their sides.

    It is a sadder day when people believe them.

  45. “Be assured of this, President Trump and I are going to continue to fight for what we know is right.”

    Are there more chilling words than this that could have come out of the Vice-Enabler-in-Chief's mouth?

    If Pence thinks he and the Liar-in-Chief are doing what is 'right', imagine what he thinks might be wrong.

    Is it 'right' to support a serial liar who is your boss? Is it right to support a boss with a long list of immoral and possibly illegal actions that are disregarded as 'fake news'?

    Is it right to support a leader, and his family, who is personally profiteering from his authority in government?

    Is it right to support a leader who has compliments for the world's worst dictators and killers while crushing decades of allied support?

    Is it right to support an administration that dismantles the protection of America's air and water and promotes it's decline?

    Is it right to ignore global warming and the implications for the future of all mankind?

    Is it right to support an administration that intentionally takes children away from their mothers and fathers and puts them in chains... for daring to come to America in the first place?

    Pence is a man so blinded that he would sell his soul in the face of a community that is required, by its very intent, to search and promote the meaning of love and compassion and decency. A man who instead seeks more opportunity of more power and more privilege.

    ...'what we know is right'. Lead on, Mr. Pence.

  46. When a religion aligns with a country or one political party it loses all credibility and transforms itself into a cult. When the evangelical Christian do not speak up against the daily violence and demeaning comments on twitter, if they do not stand up for the weak, the disadvantaged, the persecuted, the people in need, the refugees, the daily threat against minorities and woman they no longer follow Jesus Christ but idolize their leader Mr. Trump. They have morphed into a right wing political movement and no longer represent the gospel but are complicit into spreading hatred and intolerance. Is this the good news? I do not want to have anything to do with them

  47. From the article photo I think we're all "healed"...thank goodness for Pence's healing powers with our thoughts and ...wait for it...prayers.

    What a great Evangelist and Healer --- that Pence dude.

  48. Given the policies of the Trump administration it is is hard to believe that these so-called Christians have ever actually read the Bible. Jesus would be appalled by the administration's tax favors for the rich and wanton cruelty towards minorities and vulnerable members of society. The stream of unceasing lies told by a vain and shallow man who seeks nothing more than his own aggrandizement and enrichment should send real Christians running in the other direction.

  49. "500 days of promises made and promises kept."
    is that what you call make-believe?

  50. I'm not certain that VP Pence, premier hypocrite that he has shown himself to be, is the "second coming" God had in mind.

  51. In time, Evangelical Christian churches will come to rue the day when people began to hear the word "Evangelical Christian" and automatically associate those words with "Trump Supporter" and therefore with "Hypocrite".

  52. I am so sick and tired of the "evangelicals" who were instrumental in delivering to us the Trump administration.

    I wish they would seclude themselves, prepare for their reward in the next life, and leave the task of dealing with reality to the rational adults among us.

  53. How can this happen in America? I am Roman Catholic. I still remember Mario Cuomo, former gov of NY, facing down the Cardinal of the Archdiocese of New York over the abortion issue. Cuomo said something to the effect of, "I may be a Catholic, but as a leader of people who practice various faiths--or none-- I am bound by the Constitution to keep religious matters separate from public, societal, governmental matters." That happened in a state that, I believe, is majority Roman Catholic---I do know that Western New York was, at the time, more than 75% Catholic. Legal abortion passed.

    The Cardinal withdrew his threat to excommunicate Mario Cuomo.

    If I am mistaken, any New Yorker may set my story straight--I was there only from 1983-1997.

  54. Most Catholics feel this way, as do I, unless their the Rick Santorum type. Catholicism wasn’t restrictive enough for Mike Pence so he turned to evangelicalism.

  55. Turning away abused women and children at the border. Ripping children from their parents when they are here to ask for help. Attacking people and discriminating against them just because they hold a different definition of love. There is nothing Christian about the Republican Party anymore and decent evangelicals will see that.

  56. "He appealed for the community’s continued support, even as his appearance led to complaints that a religious event was being used for political gain."

    The separation of church and state, ensuring that the state should not favor one religion over another, and that government is not designed to serve church-related ends, means nothing to Mike "Religious Freedom Restoration Act" Pence.

    The most heartening part of this article isn't that some in the SBC see Pence's appearance as problematic because he intends to violate the separation of church and state to serve their interests... but that they see his true motivation is for the administration to use them to serve his own.

  57. Most true Christians would encourage their flock to study the actions, rather than the words of 'holy men'.

    America's greatest loss will be the young Christians, those whose Spiritual growth is harmed from witnessing playboy bunny affairs, porn star affairs, adultery, and endless episodes of false statements by Mr. Trump, and the adoration of his fawning vice-president.

  58. Did these Pastors expect to welcome Pence without a not unexpected political salient from the Trump administration?
    "let us pray together' from Pence and have a nice day?

  59. Though I am not a biblical scholar , I have heard of the anti christ . Something about the false one who comes at the end times . Funny how many “ Christians “ & republicans talk about nothing but the Bible & the constitution but seem to have never read or have any understanding of either one .

  60. If evangelicals would flow through by standing up to Trump’s many transgressions, this could be a communications opportunity to show us, the real essence of what it means to be an evangelical. Since Trumps election I have seen nothing inspirational that I could respect from Evangelicals. They have been willing to accept spiteful and outrageous behavior in the name of Christianity?

  61. Too little too late. The majority of Evangelicals still forsake their God for greed and power. They will be judged in time if their beliefs hold true. I would love to see the look on their faces as the temperature rises as they descend.

  62. Get rid of religion and all its myths, hocus pokus, hypocrisies and fairy tales, and the world is going to be a better place.

  63. We should always remember that Mr. Pence doesn’t believe in democracy.

    He is in government to try to make the United States a theocracy.

    And, if he were to succeed, we can be sure that those who didn’t share his religious beliefs would not fare well. To look at him is to see a zealot.