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Political TheologiesPublic Religions in a Post-Secular World$
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Hent de Vries and Lawrence E. Sullivan

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780823226443

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: March 2011

DOI: 10.5422/fso/9780823226443.001.0001

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Bush's God Talk

Bush's God Talk

(p.269) Bush's God Talk
Political Theologies

Bruce Lincoln

Fordham University Press

Most discussions of George W. Bush's religious faith draw heavily on his campaign autobiography, A Charge to Keep: My Journey to the White House (1999), which puts religion at the beginning, middle, and end of the story. The book describes a gradual transformation that included such steps as Bible study, repudiation of drink, and a recommitment to God, church, and family. All this took place in 1985 and 1986, as Bush's oil business in Texas was floundering, his marriage was in trouble, and his father was preparing his White House run. In his book, Bush tells America that he regards public office as God's calling and a sacred trust. A Charge to Keep ends by explaining how the virtue of compassion informs Bush's policies and makes him a visionary leader. Bush often paired compassion with courage, describing these two as the quintessential American virtues. One is forced to conclude that Bush's theology and his deployment of it are less systematic than pragmatic.

Keywords:   George W. Bush, religious faith, theology, autobiography, God, compassion, courage, virtues, religion

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