“I want to use this essay to explore why my identification as a political theologian takes, at least for me, some getting used to”.
“Augustinians, at their best, remain critics of empires and nationalisms (especially ones that lay claim to democratic virtue). But I have suggested a political Augustinianism that wants to be more than a counsel against idolatry risks saying something about the mysterious and hidden ways of God, even in politcal action. Some still need to be reminded of Augustinian limits and the enigmas of temporal life. But in a world that has largely abandoned any hopes for redemption (in this life or the next), articulating the possibility of redemptive agency in the world strikes me as urgent. Such a political theology might offer more than critique, even for those who long for another city after time”.
“In this essay I will reflect on the twin problematics Mount Athos presents us with— that is, how to live faithfully at the intersection of two time zones and how to live in overlapping and intersecting political spaces—in the context of thinking about the relationship between Christianity and democracy. These reflections will serve as a prelude to some constructive suggestions for ways in which Orthodoxy might faithfully conceptualize its relationship to democratic politics in liberal states characterized by religious and moral plurality”.
Luke Bretherton delivering the McGee lecture at Baylor University on “The People, Populism, and the Church in the Era of Trump”