When Your Sacred Canopy Rips

Consider this 2014 blog post from Rod Dreher, in which he expresses his bafflement that 90 percent of Greek Americans are not active in the Greek Orthodox Church:


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How Not to Communicate With the Public

Way back in 2009, there was an Intelligence Squared debate in Britain that considered the statement, “The Catholic church is a force for good in the world.” Arguing in favor of the motion was Archbishop Onaiyekan of Abuja, Nigeria and Ann Widdecombe, a novelist and former politician with the Conservative Party. Arguing against was the late Christopher Hitchens and comedian Stephen Fry (this debate is avalible online in case you want to see/hear it in its entirety). For those of you who are unfamiliar with how Intelligence Squared works, a vote is taken before the debate begins to see where the audience stands on the issue. The two sides then lay out their positions in a series of opening speeches, followed by a question and answer portion and further debate between the individual speakers. Another vote is taken at the end of the program and the side that has swayed the greatest number of audience members to their side is declared the winner. At the beginning of the debate in question, the vote was For the motion: 678. Against: 1102. Don’t know: 346. After the debate, the vote was For: 268. Against: 1876. Don’t know: 34, meaning that 774 people changed their minds by the end. According to this Telegraph report, it was, “the most decisive swing against a motion that he could remember” (http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/andrewmcfbrown/100014133/intelligence-squared-debate-catholics-humiliated-by-christopher-hitchens-and-stephen-fry/)

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