I have complete faith that the Obama administration will respect the establishment clause of the us constitution so that is not an issue for me.
I am an attorney who worked on an Indian reservation for 11 years as their public defender. Needless to say there is a lot of poverty, alcoholism, and drug abuse. I attended different native churches and services. I found that my clients who really turned it around were those who found or rediscovered a solid foundation in their faith. This seemed to work better than the typical a and d programs or state probation.
I would like to see more faith based groups involved in recovery. I believe there is a difference between faith based and religion based. I believe you can reach people in a powerful way in a faith based context.Personally, I would like to see more attorneys openly engaging their faith and their legal work. I know this can be done in a positive and non-offensive way.Of course I was working in a community where faith has always been the central part of life. I suspect there are other communities, non-Indian where spirituality weaved together in social programs can only help create a vibrant healing process.The truth is, that in poor communities is is often the pastors, medicine men, and other religious who are holding it together for people. The only difference with a faith based initiative is that they would get a little help from the government. I believe this can be done without "establishing a governmental religion." To tell you the truth, when one of the clients is in so much pain with court, incarceration, poverty, addiction....they don't care what religion you are part of but they do seem to light up when you support their faith and hope during the transition period.Thanks,Renee
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