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The New Evangelical Social Engagement$
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Brian Steensland and Philip Goff

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199329533

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199329533.001.0001

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All Catholics Now?

All Catholics Now?

Specters of Catholicism in Evangelical Social Engagement

Chapter:
(p.73) 3 All Catholics Now?
Source:
The New Evangelical Social Engagement
Author(s):

Omri Elisha

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199329533.003.0003

This chapter builds on the premise that evangelical social engagement shares meaningful characteristics in common with religious ideas and sensibilities located outside of evangelical Protestantism, strictly defined. Specifically, I explore the possibility of subtle and mostly implicit Roman Catholic resonances in what constitutes contemporary evangelical social engagement, especially with regard to ministries of social welfare. I focus my essay on three thematic elements: briefly, suffering, sacramentalism, and social teaching/social justice. Building on field observations and other sources, I argue that these resonances not only invite consideration of the affinities between the two faith traditions but also open up new paths of inquiry regarding the scope and direction of evangelical social engagement in the foreseeable future. In light of ongoing collaborations between evangelicals and Catholic on hot-button moral and political issues, the plausibility of conceptual and even programmatic overlaps in other, more altruistic areas of engagement may have significant cultural and practical implications.

Keywords:   Evangelicals, Catholicism, Social engagement, Poverty, Social justice, Suffering

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