Rev. Rick Warren, the anti-gay pastor
whose acceptance to give the nation's prayer at President Barack
Obama's inauguration ceremony incited a loud protest from gay
activists, is expanding his message to print and the new media.
A new quarterly publication from
Warren, titled Purpose Driven Connection, is being sold as
part of a bundle of multimedia products. A Christian-based
social-media website membership is included with each subscription,
along with DVD guides for leading a prayer group.
The launch comes at a time when America
is becoming increasingly secular. An American Religious
Identification Survey released yesterday found that the percentage of Americans who
define themselves as Christian has dropped from 86 percent in 1990 to
76 percent in 2008. And increasingly, more Americans say they have
no faith at all. The new poll found 15 percent of Americans now say
they have no religious affiliation. That number has nearly doubled
in the past 18 years.
In announcing the Purpose Driven
Connection, Warren said the magazine will be devoted to
“There's a flat-out segment of
Americans who are unashamed followers of Jesus Christ,” Warren
said. “We're not trying to make this a magazine for everybody.”
Gay activists howled when Warren was
chosen by Obama to give the invocation prayer. They pointed out the
inconsistencies of choosing the Saddleback megachurch leader who
likened gay marriage to polygamy and an incestuous relationship while
Obama says he is a “fierce advocate of equality for gay and lesbian
Americans” and threated protests. Ultimately, Obama remained
committed to his choice and the inauguration went ahead as planned.
Purpose Driven Connection is
offered by Reader's Digest Association for $30.