I believed that no religion was to be endorsed by our government.
Now that I learn that Christianity and America are one, I am heartened that my vote counts, that blood shed by non-Christian troops is honored, and that I can be elected to serve alongside Christian office holders.
What to make, though, of Woodrow Wilson's observation: "The laws of Moses contributed the impulses which were to prepare the institutions of our modern world. And if we but have eyes to see, we should readily discover how very much beside religion we owe to the Jews, even the Constitution itself."
Perhaps we should say, "Welcome Sen. McCain, to America — a Jewish country."
Rabbi Mark S. Miller
Temple Bat Yahm
Mr. McCain's statement was made to convince fundamentalist Christians to vote for him.
He used the comment simply to gain support.
Though many came to America as Christians from Europe in other centuries, the flow of immigration has changed.
We are gradually becoming less of a Christian country of European descent because of current immigration.
Throughout the course of all elections, politicians must worry about voting blocs. As a conservative, he wants Christian fundamentalists to vote for him.
Voters can hardly be more committed to a single presidential party based on a single statement.
For example, a statement favorable to Israel, would sway voters to vote for the candidate that made that statement.
This was the statement, or "stunt" of a desperate candidate far behind in the polls who, if he fails to get the presidential nod, will probably angle for a vice-presidential spot on the ballot.
Rabbi Marc Rubenstein
Of course the United States was not founded as a Christian nation!
The founders may have been Christian, but they upheld the concept of religious freedom, which extends to religious diversity.
They were also white men, but that does not mean that they founded the country to be a white male nation.
If we think that their Christianity implies that they meant for our country to be a Christian nation, should we assume the same in regards to their gender and ethnicity?
Hopefully, we agree that is absurd.
I like to think they were wise enough to see the negative consequences of religious nations like the Holy Roman Empire and were intentional about keeping church and state separate.
As a Christian I feel it is important to state that his comment is not reflective of all Christians and is, quite frankly, offensive.
One can be Christian and think beyond a Christian nation.
Maybe John McCain can help all of us have conversations about what we really think, assume and espouse about the way we live our lives.
Rev. Sarah Halverson
Fairview Community Church