You Can’t Be a Christian and Vote For…: Conference Discusses Faith and Politics
By Brett Spangler
Four years ago a group of Anderson University School of Theology students approached Dr. Ronald V. Duncan, general director of Church of God Ministries, about finding our voice in the church. One of the opportunities provided to us, as aspiring young leaders in the church, was the chance to lead a handful of conferences. Among those conferences were the “Hot Topics” conferences.
This is the third year for the “Hot Topics” conferences at NAC, and we are incredibly excited about this year’s topic. Each year we address relevant and potentially divisive topics within the church during these sessions. On Monday, at 8:30 AM, in Decker 133, the topic on the table is “You Can’t be a Christian and Vote for…” There is, perhaps, no better time to discuss politics and faith than an election year.
For those who have never attended a “Hot Topics” conference, they are great fun! Each session begins with presentations on the topics being addressed. Following the presentations, at least thirty minutes are devoted to discussion and debate. In past years, we have dealt with issues of theodicy, same-sex marriage, and just war. In every case, insightful presentations were followed by lively debate. Perhaps the greatest blessing for me from these conferences has been the manner in which brothers and sisters in Christ are able to share, speak truths in love, and care for each other even when they disagree on such potentially volatile subjects.
This year, our presenters are David Dominianni and Aly Hawkins. They will each present their viewpoint on some issue(s) in this year’s election. David is a graduate of Christian Theological Seminary, while Aly is currently studying at Anderson University School of Theology.
Some of the primary points of discussion at the conference this year are:
• Health care as a government mandate.
• The involvement of the United States in the affairs of other nations.
• Economic policy, borrowing, and taxes.
• The role of Christians in changing the political culture.
In the afternoon, Shannon New Spangler is leading a conference, along with presenters Jorge Palacios (general director of the Hispanic Council of the Church of God) and Jared Fields (AUSOT graduate). This conference is called “Hot Topics: Social Issues” and will focus on immigration issues. This conference will take place at 1:00 PM in Decker 133. This is also guaranteed to be an enlightening and fruitful discussion.