Clinton's prayer group was part of the Fellowship (or "the Family"), a network of sex-segregated cells of political, business, and military leaders dedicated to "spiritual war" on behalf of Christ, many of them recruited at the Fellowship's only public event, the annual National Prayer Breakfast. (Aside from the breakfast, the group has "made a fetish of being invisible," former Republican Senator William Armstrong has said.) The Fellowship believes that the elite win power by the will of God, who uses them for his purposes. Its mission is to help the powerful understand their role in God's plan.
Clinton declined our requests for an interview about her faith, but in Living History, she describes her first encounter with Fellowship leader Doug Coe at a 1993 lunch with her prayer cell at the Cedars, the Fellowship's majestic estate on the Potomac. Coe, she writes, "is a unique presence in Washington: a genuinely loving spiritual mentor and guide to anyone, regardless of party or faith, who wants to deepen his or her relationship with God."
The Fellowship's ideas are essentially a blend of Calvinism and Norman Vincent Peale, the 1960s preacher of positive thinking. It's a cheery faith in the "elect" chosen by a single voter-God-and a devotion to Romans 13:1: "Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers....The powers that be are ordained of God." Or, as Coe has put it, "we work with power where we can, build new power where we can't."
When Time put together a list of the nation's 25 most powerful evangelicals in 2005, the heading for Coe's entry was "The Stealth Persuader." "You know what I think of when I think of Doug Coe?" the Reverend Schenck (a Coe admirer) asked us. "I think literally of the guy in the smoky back room that you can't even see his face. He sits in the corner, and you see the cigar, and you see the flame, and you hear his voice-but you never see his face. He's that shadowy figure."
Coe has been an intimate of every president since Ford, but he rarely imposes on chief executives, who see him as a slightly mystical but apolitical figure. Rather, Coe uses his access to the Oval Office as currency with lesser leaders. "If Doug Coe can get you some face time with the President of the United States," one official told the author of a Princeton study of the National Prayer Breakfast last year, "then you will take his call and seek his friendship. That's power."
"If you're going to do religion in public life," concurs Schenck, a Jewish convert to fundamentalist Christianity who's retained his sense of irony, Coe's friendship is a kind of "kosher...seal of approval."
Coe's friends include former Attorney General John Ashcroft, Reaganite Edwin Meese III, and ultraconservative Rep. Joe Pitts (R-Pa.). Under Coe's guidance, Meese has hosted weekly prayer breakfasts for politicians, businesspeople, and diplomats, and Pitts rose from obscurity to head the House Values Action Team, an off-the-record network of religious right groups and members of Congress created by Tom DeLay. The corresponding Senate Values Action Team is guided by another Coe protégé, Brownback, who also claims to have recruited King Abdullah of Jordan into a regular study of Jesus' teachings.
The Fellowship's long-term goal is "a leadership led by God-leaders of all levels of society who direct projects as they are led by the spirit." According to the Fellowship's archives, the spirit has in the past led its members in Congress to increase U.S. support for the Duvalier regime in Haiti and the Park dictatorship in South Korea. The Fellowship's God-led men have also included General Suharto of Indonesia; Honduran general and death squad organizer Gustavo Alvarez Martinez; a Deutsche Bank official disgraced by financial ties to Hitler; and dictator Siad Barre of Somalia, plus a list of other generals and dictators. Clinton, says Schenck, has become a regular visitor to Coe's Arlington, Virginia, headquarters, a former convent where Coe provides members of Congress with sex-segregated housing and spiritual guidance.
Hillary's Prayer: Hillary Clinton's Religion and Politics
For 15 years, Hillary Clinton has been part of a secretive religious group that seeks to bring Jesus back to Capitol Hill. Is she triangulating-or living her faith?
by Kathryn Joyce and Jeff Sharlet
September 01, 2007
Now, the support for dictators just says it all, doesn't it. Do you think Jesus supported or supports dictators in the evil they have done or are doing? He did not and does not. Which spirit supports evil? The satanic spirit does, and Jesus is not Satan.
When you see Calvin, you know that there is antichrist teaching involved — ignoring and distorting Jesus's message concerning the poor for instance. Calvin said the poor are to blame for their plight while Jesus made clear that the rich are selfish and not of the right spirit.
When you see Norman Vincent Peale you know that there is antichrist teaching involved.
We wrote before the following:
On the other end, we have the Robert Schullers of the world, who say things such as, "There is no greater damage that can be done than to refer to the lost sinful condition of man." How wrong can one be! All those who don't hear the voice of Jesus are lost sheep or not of the fold if they are within hearing distance and ignore. Schuller's way lead straight down the wide path to hell.
Robert H. Schuller fell under the spell of Norman Vincent Peale, the author of The Power of Positive Thinking. It is self-esteem. It is the opposite of humility. It cannot take one to where one realizes how one's selfishness has done so much damage, how everyone's selfishness has done so much damage. It isn't the message of Jesus.
It is humanism cloaked in false Christianity. It is ecumenicalism not for the sake of conversion but for the sake of syncretism-down. It's no accident that Peale was a Freemason. It feels good to its followers. However, they aren't bringing forth. The fruit has never come out of this bent. It is half-truth in that, of course, God is positive.
The Empire isn't God's. It's Satan's. Satan is the false god of this world (for awhile). All real Christians know that. Militarism is Satan's tool. All real Christians know that too. Satan will be overturned though. Again, all real Christians know this.
The whole system upon which the worldly empire of Satan has been built up will fall and be displaced by the real kingdom of the real God: The God Jesus worshipped and still worships in that very kingdom with that very real God.
Greed, violence, and sexual and other depravities will be replaced by giving and sharing all, total pacifism, and purity in heart, mind, and soul. The New Commandment is the rightful law.
This Fellowship, this Family of Doug Coe, is false-Dominionist at heart. It is for coercion to bring in the kingdom. That isn't Jesus's way. Wake up!
Stop calling yourself a Christian until you become one. Stop saying you follow Jesus until you stop all your capitalist selfishness. There is no coercion in Christianity or amongst the real followers of Jesus. There is no desire to be a capitalist. God's house is not a house of commerce, and we are to be temples (dwelling places of God)! Jesus doesn't force anyone to do anything, ever. He only appeals with the truth. The truth is freely followed by those who love it. They know his voice. That's how they are sorted and separated.
Let's be clear here also about Methodists. They come in different spirits.
Some comments on The Huffington Post:
avoter See Profile I'm a Fan of avoter
This is from: The Institute of Religion and Democracy
Washington, DC"Several groups within the 7.9 million member United Methodist Church are targeting Israel with divestment proposals and hostile publications.
* The United Methodist Board of Church and Society (GBCS), the church"s official Washington-based lobbying office, is urging church members and church agencies to divest from Caterpillar, Inc. Their resolution, which will go before the United Methodist General Conference in April 2008, accuses Peoria-based Caterpillar of facilitating Israel"s destruction of Palestinian property. Five regional annual conferences within United Methodism have passed similar resolutions.
* The New York-based United Methodist Women"s Division has published a children"s book containing anti-Israel themes, "From Palestine to Seattle; Becoming Neighbors and Friends." The booklet portrays Israel as an oppressor of Palestinians while omitting nearly all mention of terrorism.
* The Washington-based Methodist Federation for Social Action (MFSA), a liberal caucus group within United Methodism, has outdone the church"s official lobby office by calling for divestment against ALL "companies supporting the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories and other violations of human rights in Israel/Palestine."
* The United Methodist Women"s Division also has released a mission study for 2007-2008 that portrays Israel as virtually the sole aggressor in the Middle East. The study is for use by nearly 700,000 United Methodist Women"s members across the nation.
Reply Favorite Flag as abusive Posted 09:48 AM on 03/27/2008
batguano See Profile I'm a Fan of batguano
Thanks, it's about time some Americans have removed the scales from their eyes to see clearly the pre-meditated continuation of occupation, ethnic cleansing and colonization by the extremist Israelis, and also their targeted assassinations (murder), destruction of most Palestinian infrastructure, ancient olive groves, theft of water resources, land "confiscations", wholesale home demolitions, etc, etc, etc.....the list of crimes and provocations committed by "our allies" in the ME is long indeed. Add to what crimes they commit in the territories and overall ME and their deliberate stymieing of any real peace process, the subversion of our American foreign policy thru AIPAC, AEI, PNAC, JINSA, et al, foreign aid, and our domestic politics.
BRAVO to the Methodists!
mommadona See Profile I'm a Fan of mommadona
"Is it possible that Hillary's participation in this fundamentalist group — which apparently preaches the "gospel of military might" — would help explain her vote in favor of authorizing President Bush to attack Iraq? Is it possible her pro-NAFTA stance during her husband's administration comes from its embrace of "the no-holds-barred economics of globalization"? Is it possible that the sense some get that Hillary feels entitled to be president comes in part from this group's belief that "it's only the elites who matter"?
I encourage any reporter covering Hillary's campaign to ask her about all this."
This information connects quite a few dots I've been researching in the past 8 years.
And believe me, the truth is MUCH stranger than any fiction that could be thought up.
Aldous Huxley would be in shock and awe.
Mandelay See Profile I'm a Fan of Mandelay
What about her "religious family"? They're not cursing the United States and they're not shoving Black Liberation Theology down our throats. Ask Bono about The Family (go to his speech) ... he attended a gathering. Do a little more investigating beyond the uber-liberal media that is getting dirtier every day, with race-baiting and now faith-baiting. Not gonna get you any more votes and you'll hurt the country in the long run. Any type of religious fundamentalism is going to send the uber-liberal Obamadama into fits. The liberal wing of the Democratic party goes way, way out of its way to avoid any mixing with these "religious freaks" but this is how unity comes about, this is how bridges are built, this is where conversations take place. A very, very large number of Americans identify with these values. Perhaps its time for the Democratic party to recognize that. Instead of having their convention managed by a followed of Black Libertion Theology, with committees seeded by token representatives of other world religions, perhaps the DNC can make a bigger tent for the rest of the country. See this recent NYTimes article
Steven G. Brant See this blogger's posts I'm a Fan of Steven G. Brant
"A very, very large number of Americans identify with these values." you say. Which values are you referring to?
The values I am critiquing are putting the power of "elites" over the power of "we, the people".. of seeing military force as the "first response" to global problems... of pushing free market economic at the expense of the environment.
Are those the values you say a very large number of Americans identify with?
I appreciate your link to Bono speaking at one of The Family's National Prayer Breakfasts, but that does not make him a participant in The Family as Hillary is. My perspective is that the National Prayer Breakfast is The Family's "public face", through which it appears to be nothing more than another pro-God organization. In reality, The Family is much more than that.
Bono is, to me, a real bridge builder. He really listens to people. Hillary acts like she is listening. But it's all largely an act. Otherwise she wouldn't attack or use sarcasm when asked a tough question. She already believes she is "the smartest person in the room". That's fundamentalist thinking, pure and simple. No self doubt. Never - except under extreme circumstances - admits to making a mistake. Just like George Bush.
The Fellowship, The Family, Doug Coe, they are just covers for the greedy capitalist class that is decidedly antichrist. They claim that Jesus was laissez faire. Well, Jesus is against coercion. Therefore, evil can mistakenly pursue personal, private special privilege and advantage. However, Jesus is for each soul giving and sharing all in service to the least (the meek). That is not what the Family is about at all. They are twisters, distorters, up to no good in the end. Their means are manipulative. They usurp the real message of Jesus Christ. They lust for power. They compete and combine for selfish power (fascistic: Combining false-Christianity with corporatism). They are not about to do what Jesus did for the reasons Jesus did, ever. They are the power hungry in the divided house that is scheduled to fall.
The Family was founded in April 1935 by Abraham Vereide, a Norwegian immigrant who made his living as a traveling preacher. One night, while lying in bed fretting about socialists, Wobblies, and a Swedish Communist who, he was sure, planned to bring Seattle under the control of Moscow, Vereide received a visitation: a voice, and a light in the dark, bright and blinding. The next day he met a friend, a wealthy businessman and former major, and the two men agreed upon a spiritual plan. They enlisted nineteen business executives in a weekly breakfast meeting and together they prayed, convinced that Jesus alone could redeem Seattle and crush the radical unions.
Jesus plus nothing: Undercover among America's secret theocrats, by Jeffrey Sharlet. Harpers Magazine. March 2003.
Hogwash! There were many unionists who were militant. It is also true that a strike is akin to coercion. However, each person is free to purge himself or herself of that which is unclean to the degree afforded that person by God's spirit within. Each person for instance can rid his house and heart of pornography and other evils. Where the line is drawn where people choose things without coercive motive is for the discerning to discover.
The truth is that in the 1930's, the workers were being treated horrendously poorly. They always have been in general. Only specific organizations have ever treated workers well. The truth is that the takers have always usurped religion to further their evil means to their evil end. Abraham Vereide was no different. He wasn't interested in giving and sharing all as Jesus did with his disciples who numbered in the many thousands. Abraham Vereide was interested in putting down those who wanted greater giving and sharing.
It was that very treatment at the hands of the Abraham Vereides of the world that radicalized many workers away from Christianity that had been given a bad name and reputation by those Abraham Vereides. It is that, that needs to be put right.
The common people of the world need to come to realize that the Abraham Vereides did not, do not, and will never represent Jesus. The grassroots needs to come to realize that false-conservatives giving Christianity a bad name and reputation is a trick to cause the grassroots to fall away into violence and away from righteousness and unselfishness, which righteousness, unselfishness, along with pacifism that is a requirement for righteousness, will save them all if they will turn to it.