INTERVIEW WITH DR. BOB EDGAR OF THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF CHURCHES

11/28/06

Dr. Bob Edgar is general secretary of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA, the leading U.S. organization in the movement for Christian unity. Thirty-five Protestant, Anglican, Orthodox, historically African-American and peace communions, to which approximately 45 million congregants belong, work together in the Council to promote unity and to serve churches and people worldwide. The Council is focusing its energies on major initiatives in the areas of overcoming poverty, protecting the environment, fostering interfaith understanding, and building international peace. An ordained elder in the United Methodist Church, Dr. Edgar came to the Council from Claremont School of Theology, Claremont, Calif., where he was president from 1990-2000. Dr. Edgar is well known for his service as a six-term member of the U.S. House of Representatives, where he was the first Democrat in more than 120 years to be elected from the heavily Republican Seventh District of Pennsylvania. That district is just west of Philadelphia. Serving in Congress from 1974 to 1987, he led efforts to improve public transportation, authored the community Right to Know provisions of Super Fund legislation, co-authored the new GI bill for the all-volunteer service, fought wasteful water projects and supported environmental goals. Among other appointments, he served as chair of the Congressional Clearinghouse on the Future (1982-86) and as a member of the Select Committee on Assassinations (1976-78) that investigated the deaths of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and President John F. Kennedy. In 1987, true to his belief in term limits, he voluntarily stepped down from office. In this interview with WMNF's Rob Lorei, Dr. Edgar addressed isses of the rise of conservative churches and broadcasters, the Bible on the topics of gay marriage, abortion, poverty and global warming; the war in Iraq; and getting people of different religious faiths to work together.

Dr. Edgar is will be speaking tonight at 7PM at the United Church in Passe A Grille. He's the author of the new book: "Middle Church: Reclaiming the Moral Values of the Faithful Majority from the Religious Right":

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