I'd be the last one to suggest that the Republican National Convention should be a bastion of Christian orthodoxy, and I'm sure no one goes there for the liturgy. But still. The schedule ought to tell us something about the "values" of the GOP, don't you think? I mean priorities, what sort of face you want to show the world.
Several have already pointed out the fact that, should Romney-Ryan win in November, we'll have us the first dynamic White House duo in which neither is Protestant. Yes, of course, none of us Prots should want to claim the Current Occupant, and it becomes a fun game if you go backwards down the list of PsOTUS with the Nicene Creed in your other hand and compare/contrast. What I'm getting at is the symbolism.
To the point: There is not one single WASP scheduled to deliver a prayer at the 2012 Republican National Convention. Forget the Anglo-Saxon part of the acronym: There's not one white Protestant scheduled to talk to God on behalf of the Republicans. In fact, the only "P" on the list is the Rev. Sammy Rodriguez, "President of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference," a slicked-back Pentecostal holy roller who Tweets about what a bigot Sheriff Joe Arpaio is. (Fun fact: Sammy's wife, "the Rev. Eva Rodriguez," offered the Benediction on Wednesday of 2008's Republican National Carnival.)
Tuesday kicks off with Rabbi Meir Soloveichik of New York City. Wednesday opens with Ishwar Singh, a Sikh, and closes with His Eminence Methodios, Metropolitan of Boston. And Thursday's opening bell comes from Ken and Priscilla Hutchins, Mitt Romney's friends who have likely received the Second Token of the Melchizedek Priesthood. The affair will be brought to a close by His Eminence Timothy Cardinal Dolan.
Now I'm not trying to open a can of syncretistic worms, nor seeking a debate over prayers to the Triune God in a diverse room. I'm just wondering: They couldn't find one Southern Baptist whose face they wanted on the jumbotron? Or some pastor from an Evangelical Free Church, or a Methodist, Presbyterian, Lutheran, Episcopalian, Willow Creeker, Fundamental Baptist, etc., etc.?
You know, all those folks who represent the base?
Aaron D. Wolf (1973-2019) was Chronicles' executive editor. His writings have appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers. He was a frequent guest on Issues, Etc. (Lutheran Public Radio) and The Paul Youngblood Show (nta.fm), and has appeared on several other radio programs, including The Tom Clark Show (Wisconsin Public Radio) and Extension 720 With Milt Rosenberg (WGN).