Friday, January 7, 2011

Lutherans in Congress

The 112th Congress, 2011-2012 includes 26 Lutherans: 11Democrats and 15 Republicans.  Fifteen are ELCA, the majority of the rest are Missouri Synod and a few Wisconsin Synod folks thrown in for good measure.

Not much newsy there.  What is interesting is that there continue to be proportionately more Methodists, Presbyterians, and Episcopalians in Congress than you find in the general population and significantly less Baptists and Pentecostals in Congress than in the general population.  Then there is the out sized slice of Jews in Congress -- way more proportionately than you find in the general population!

Some 42 Republicans and 16 Democrats are listed simply as Protestants -- whatever that means.  Often it means that they consider themselves Christians but remain unaffiliated with any denomination or congregation.

But I would like another statistic -- one I will probably never see.  How many of them attend worship and how often... Now that would be interesting, for sure!


Rev. Eric J Brown said...

I was asked why there were so few LCMS folks in Congress around 3 months ago in Bible Study. I gave my first, cynical reply by saying that politics was too dirty a game for most of us. Then I said that my super cynical reply was that those of us who wanted cut-throat politics just did Synodical politics =o)

Anonymous said...

A better barometer of U.S. Senators
would be to analyze their net
financial worth. It takes millions
of dollars to run for the Senate and
this eliminates many good candidates.
Do you know any "poor" Episcopalians
or "poor" Jews in America? Baptists,
Pentecostals, and Lutherans are not
well-represented among the multi-
millionaires in our nation.

Carl Vehse said...

Given the text and the inclusion of the ???A denomination, the title should be "Lutherans and LINOs in Congress."

"But I would like another statistic -- one I will probably never see. How many of them attend worship and how often..."

Perhaps one way to encourage getting that statistic would be for Lutheran churches, such as your own, to start publishing attendance records of members on the church's internet site. There probably wouldn't be very many objections.

Or you might simply write to the Lutheran representatives and ask if they attend worship and how often. From 1 Pet. 3:15, you may even get a relevant answer.

As for Lutheran politicians who do their job rightly, they can expect to get flak, or at best left-handed compliments from representatives of their own church body.