C. Andrew Doyle, ninth bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Texas, has established himself as a powerful voice in today’s faith community; with books like THE JESUS HEIST and UNABASHEDLY EPISCOPALIAN, Doyle has brought fearless, informed clarity to the many issues important to Christians today.
The latest from Doyle – CITIZEN: FAITHFUL DISCIPLESHIP IN A PARTISAN WORLD (February 17)– is a must-read as we enter the bitterly polarized election cycle of 2020. Bishop Doyle wades into the tricky topic of Christian citizenship from the first chapter of the book: “In 2016 U.S. election revealed that Christians are divided about what it means to be a citizen in God’s kingdom and a citizen of the empire. This book is about Christian citizenship. What is its framework? What are its originating principles? How does it engage the princes of this world? What is its message? How does it make its way in community? These are just some of the questions I attempt to shed light upon…”
Doyle draws on Christian tradition, as well as expert Biblical and philosophical insight, to offer a model for congregations to engage in politics as Christian citizens. Taking us back to our very roots as Christian citizens – where God invited us to be part of God’s story by virtue of our own creation – Doyle uses CITIZEN to make an impassioned plea for how Christians should view our priorities regarding such issues as the economy, isolationism, migrants and refugees, global domination, civil rights – and even why we should hold elected officials to high standards.
“This book is not about being an American who happens to be a Christian. This book is very much about what it means to be a Christian citizen in the reign of God who happens to be an American, or a citizen of any other nation-state. I am not interested in bending the Christian story to justify unchristian means of achieving things. When we do that, we undermine our citizenship in the reign of God and make Jesus into a puppet of the empire. It also makes us poor citizens, because it erodes the critical eye that maintains the health of American democracy.”
A vacated Christian citizenship means the loss of a critical voice within the wider political discourse – and Doyle insists that Christians cannot let outsiders define our role in government.
C. Andrew Doyle’s CITIZEN is crucial reading for this all-important election year; it is an essential road map in establishing the role and work of Christian citizens in shaping the systems of authority that impact our community, nation, and the world. “I aim for this book to be a guide for conversation and for listening, for thoughtful action, reflection, and prayer… I hope that this book will offer an engaged, virtuous, habit-forming Christian citizenship that is convivial in manner, and works towards a common good.”