The Christian Left in the United States may just be gaining momentum, but in the UK they're far ahead of us already. Greenbelt UK, a long-running progressive Christian political festival, should give American progressive Christians something to aspire to.
This annual Christian shindig evolved out of the non-conformist fringes of the church in the early 1970s and, since then, has evolved into a progressive, liberal arts festival, where workshops on protest politics and issues of social justice are just as important as acts of worship.
No longer exclusively Christian, the bill mixes believers with those who, simply, share Greenbelt's values: Lambchop, UK soul star Jamelia, the Handsome Family.
Tony Naylor, The Guardian, Saturday August 21, 2004
Consider reading something like about a Christian youth rally in the United States:
115,000 people across the world will die prematurely because of poverty during the Greenbelt weekend. This July, don’t believe the hype. Monday at Greenbelt 2005 sees a special MAKE POVERTY HISTORY campaign day.
I'm often surprised that no one in the United States, neither 20-year-old atheists nor 40-year-old Christians, takes much notice of the fact that young people who aren't fundamentalists don't go to church. The liberal church under 40 almost doesn't exist. People tend to shrug it off, say, "they'll come back when they have children."
But a visit to the young Christian progressives in England means, for me at least, feeling a little awestruck as to what can be accomplished when young, spiritual, progressive activists come together.