by John Ellis
“Only they asked us to remember the poor, the very thing I was eager to do.” Galatians 2:10
This morning, I woke up to a flurry of Tweets excoriating Beto O’Rourke for advocating that churches and religious universities that oppose same-sex marriage should lose their tax-exempt status. One tweet pushed back by asking something along the lines of, “What is Beto’s plan to replace all the homeless shelters, soup kitchens, and other charitable services offered by churches that would be shuttered by their loss of tax-exempt status?”
There is much truth embedded in that question. Christ’s Church has a noble history of social activism as she seeks to care for the poor and oppressed. Men like William Wilberforce dedicated much time and energy to combatting social injustices. Many of the great reform movements of the 19th century were spearheaded by devout Christians. Today, the pro-life movement is guided by women and men who are devoted to protecting the “least of these.” Throughout this country, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, and adoption agencies are sponsored and supported by churches.