Welcome To Washington, Senator Brown

Nothing says “welcome to Washington, Senator Brown” like arriving in town only to be met by Religious Right activists such as Rev. Rob Schenck who will inform you are not a very good Christian:

In the hours since Mr. Brown won the Super Bowl of special elections, a lot about him has come to light. In yesterday’s post I told you about the Senator-elect’s family church. Well, it looks like it may indeed be more of his family’s church than his own. A source that once worked for Mr. Brown in the state legislature described him as a “non-church-going Protestant.” Apparently, Mr. Brown has the reputation of doing something other than worship on Sunday mornings.

Even if Mr. Brown taught Sunday school every week, it wouldn’t necessarily mean he’s a “good Christian,” nor that he understands Christian doctrine or moral instruction–and it appears he’s quite deficient on at least the latter. He explicitly recognizes Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court decision de-criminalizing the killing of pre-born children, as “the law of the land.” (Before coming down too heavily on him for that, though, remember “pro-life” Chief Justice John Roberts said the same thing during his confirmation hearing.) What betrays even more his lack of good Christian moral formation is Mr. Brown’s support of so-called “civil unions,” which has as a consequence, whether intended or unintended, of granting social sanction to immoral behavior.

A few of my readers have concluded that because of these serious deficiencies, Mr. Brown is either a fake or a uselessly flawed individual that shouldn’t occupy this seat any longer than necessary. Well, I’m not quite so condemnatory or dismissive. What Mr. Brown appears to me to be is a Massachusetts politician. He may or may not be a Christian, but that doesn’t change his profession.

Elsewhere, Schenck reports on his meeting with Brown and his own vow to help him develop a conscience:

“He comes off as humble, genuinely interested in what he is doing and the people he will serve. My concern is for his interior moral formation. I told him he can count on our prayers and our pastoral advice. My first impression is that there’s nothing guaranteed with Scott Brown, but it seems he has a conscience, and I intend to work on developing that conscience.”