By Jason S. Lantzer
In this entire and obtainable ebook, Jason S. Lantzer chronicles the increase and fall of the Seven Sisters, documenting the ways that they stopped shaping American tradition and commenced to be formed by means of it. After reviewing and critiquing the normal decline narrative of the Mainline he argues for a reconceptualization of the Mainline for the twenty-first century, a brand new grouping of 7 Sisters that seeks to acknowledge the vibrancy of yankee Christianity.
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Extra info for Mainline Christianity: The Past and Future of America’s Majority Faith
38 To further extend a hand to immigrants, the emerging Mainline brought Evangelical Lutherans into the mix, completing the lineup of the Seven Sisters. While this action showed the ability of ethnic groups to Americanize (even if at times reluctantly), the Lutherans were also a very interesting choice for such a role. Having been a part of the American religious landscape since the colonial period, their inclusion seemed more a nod to the forces besetting the emerging America of the twentieth century than risking the Protestant establishment.
61 The duration of the conflict, with fighting lasting from 1775 until 1783, was a test of faith for many Americans. Some who were sure in 1775 that God had called them to revolt began to wonder as the war continued if they were enacting God’s plan or not. If the war tested their faith, it also gave the nation an appreciation for the religious diversity in the colonies-turnedstates and the ramifications it might have on politics. The Declaration of Independence made implicit, if somewhat vague, calls to a higher authority when it came to rights.
Likewise, the primary author of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson, though raised an Anglican, also embraced Deism. But Jefferson also worked for disestablishment in Virginia (hardly the purview of Deists alone) and was far from being a “strict separationist” when it came to matters of church and state. Though often counted among the Deists, it is perhaps safer to say that George Washington was a disinterested Anglican who sought to have religion play a wider role in the life of the nation.