Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
October 13, 1960
NUMBER 23, PAGE 3,5b

Politics In Religion

Wm. E. Shamblin, Port Hueneme, California

The following article is from a bulletin, The Venice Builder, published by the church of Christ in Venice, Calif., July 31, 1960.

Is It The Business Of The Church?

Is it the business of the church to keep a Catholic out of the White House? I know that the business of the church is to preach the gospel, Eph. 4:11, 12; 1 Tim. 3:14, 15; 2 Cor. 11; Phil. 4, and help needy saints, Acts 6; Acts 11; 1 Cor. 16. This is the only work the Lord has given the church to do. No man can show otherwise. Therefore, it is not the business of the church to get involved in politics in any shape, form or fashion.

Of late I have heard of congregations of the church having special services to explain why a Catholic can not be president. I have noticed in numerous bulletins, articles, explaining why a Catholic should not be elected to serve as president. I have also heard of some congregations buying literature on this subject.

May I ask this question? Would it be all right if congregations of the church would send donations to Mr. Nixon's campaign fund to help him defeat Mr. Kennedy, and thus keep Catholics out of the White House? If your answer is no (and I am sure it is), well how would you justify spending the Lord's money in the ways mentioned above.

As an individual if you want to take a part in political affairs, well fine, but, please, don't try to get the Lord's church involved in it!

Tommy A. Hodge The above article fills me with mixed emotions. I agree fully with brother Hodge that the church is not a political

organization. The church is not to sponsor political candidates nor support political parties or campaign drives.

I feel, however, that brother Hodge has taken an extreme position; for while the church has no right to enter into politics, it does have the right and responsibility to oppose religious error wherever it may be and warn people against its sinister designs. It is not the man nor the party that we are opposing, but rather the Catholic church and her designs on our religious freedom. Exposing error comes under the commission to preach the Gospel.

To brother Hodges question — "Would it be alright if congregations of the church would send donations to Mr.

Nixon's campaign fund to help him defeat Mr. Kennedy, and thus keep Catholics out of the White House?" — the answer is no. It certainly would not be right for the church to send donations to Mr. Nixon's campaign fund. Neither would it be right, as a political effort to campaign for Mr. Nixon from the pulpit or in any connection with the work of the church. But the church's opposition to religious tyranny and to Catholic attempts to augment their purpose through politics has nothing to do with Mr. Nixon. It does not obligate the church to him nor to any political party or candidate. It makes no difference through what party the protgs of Catholicism seek office, we must resist, and defeat if possible, her subtle quest for position and power over us. If this seems like politics, it is only because of the political aspects of the Catholic church. It is she, not us, who has brought politics into religion. Isn't her politics just another erroneous facet of the false religion that we are opposing? Are we to stop at the word "politics" and declare sanctuary for her while she promotes her ambitions right under our noses?

As a politico-religious organization, the Catholics are in a position to talk out of either side of their mouth. If attacked by a political party, they cry "religious intolerants;" if questioned by a religious organization, they charge "politics in religion." Such subterfuge is used to build up qualms and to effect a hands-off policy enabling them to work freely and unopposed in accomplishing their purpose.

The following article from the Van Nuys (Calif.) News, Thurs. July 14, 1960, is undoubtedly a good sample of Catholic thinking, though, not always so boldly expressed.

All-Catholic Vote Urged For Kennedy

Editor, The News;

It should be the duty of every Catholic in America to turn out and vote Election Day for Kennedy. It is time to show the easy-chair Protestant religious and political leaders that the Democratic Party, most organized labor leaders and the Catholic movement of America are one united party with a real leader.

A leader that will end delinquency of non-churchgoers, of children's waywardness, broken homes, over-drinking, racketeering in unions, business or government departments and will recognize America — not Italy — as the Catholic capital of the world.

Kennedy may withdraw all foreign aid or recognition of any country large or small that refuses to recognize the Catholic Church as the dominant moving power in the world. It is time to strike now with all the power at hand in every pulpit, school, Congress, state, county, city and political organizations.

Yes, even fraternal groups. If need be, a study of the Franco system in Spain where he tolerates no Masons, Protestants or radicals of any kind. He rules with an iron hand and its too bad for any so-called liberals or independent thinkers.

It is time for action now. November 4, vote for Kennedy for President, Brown or Butler for Vice President, or give me a good reason for not so voting.

C. Williams Box 191, Avalon

The church and state (civil government) are separate entities. Each must function within its own sphere without encroaching upon the other, but when a religious organization makes such an encroachment, the church is to oppose and expose the evil of it.