|Endorsed by Henry Luce's CIA mouthpiece|
The book's promise for those who follow its forty-day journey is that "you will know God's purpose for your life." The book is being promoted and studied in some Catholic parishes, especially as a Lenten exercise, so it is worth examining whether it can deliver on its exaggerated promise.
The book's author, Rick Warren, was labeled as "America's most influential pastor" by Christianity Today. He is the pastor of Saddleback Church, which is situated on a 120-acre campus in southern California that was designed by theme park experts. Every weekend nearly 20,000 people attend services at one of nine "venues," including a 3,000-seat main sanctuary, a religious coffee bar, and a "beach hut" for high school students. Sculpted into the landscape are settings for forty Bible reenactments, including a stream that can part like the Red Sea.
Saddleback is associated with the Southern Baptist Convention, but Warren's teachings have spread widely. Thousands of pastors from more than 100 countries have attended Warren's Purpose-Driven seminars and subscribe to his free weekly e-mail newsletter, Ministry Toolbox. Warren's web site claims that he is starting a new Reformation. (more...)
|Swimming in the wrong lane|
Some supplementary reading: