A little known evangelical minister Reverend Jim Ball and his wife Kara were in Manhattan last week to announce the launch of a new national campaign he is calling the Evangelical Climate Initiative. Reverend Ball has the support of over eighty other evangelical pastors and he is one of six designated spokespeople for the group including the President of the Salvation Army, the Director of World Hope International and the Editor of Christianity Today. Reverend Ball received a bachelors from Baylor University a masters from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and a PHD from Drew University’s Divinity School. It was while on Drew’s campus that he was first introduced to the idea of the connection between environmentalism and scripture as well as the greater burden that pollution and global warming places on the poor.
I did not find it surprising that Reverend Ball and his initiative came under immediate attack. The surpise is from where the attacks came. He was attacked not only by pro-business conservatives like Iain Murray of the Conservative Enterprise Institute, but also by other evangelicals such as Jerry Falwell, James Dobson and other members of the Interfaith Stewarship Alliance who quickly issued a press release saying the the National Association of Evangelicals does not agree with Reverend Ball’s campaign.
Even Operation Rescue and Concerned Women for America joined in noting that the Evangelical Climate Initiative had received a contribution from a group they characterized a supporting abortion and demanding that Reverend Ball give the “blood money” back. I really wish that Concerned Women for America would come up with its own environmental initiative. Unfortunately they are still clinging to the idea that global warming is “junk science”.