Evangelical group takes broad view

March 10, 2007 at 4:40 PM

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn., March 10 (UPI) -- The National Association of Evangelicals board, meeting this week in Minnesota, supported a broad agenda that includes environmental protection.

The board voted to reaffirm a 2004 Call for Civic Responsibility, the Los Angeles Times reported. Board members also declined to censure Rev. Richard Cizik, an evangelical lobbyist who has embraced environmentalism as a moral issue.

The meeting illustrated the split in the movement between the first generation of political evangelicals like James Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family, and younger evangelicals.

In an open letter, Dobson, Don Wildmon of the American Family Assn. and Paul Weyrich of American Values accused Cizik of "dividing and demoralizing" the movement by moving away from the focus on abortion and homosexuality.

The Rev. Jim Wallis has challenged Dobson to a debate, the Times said.

"Are the only really 'great moral issues' those concerning abortion, gay marriage and the teaching of sexual abstinence?" Wallis asked. "How about the reality of 3 billion of God's children living on less than $2 per day?"

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