Megapastor Aims to Save Not Only Souls, but Lives

Critics blast megapastor's worldwide efforts as more hype
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 9, 2008 5:07 PM CDT
Warren preaches at Saddleback.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Megapastor Rick Warren, he of The Purpose Driven Life, has moved from organizing churches to save souls to organizing churches to save lives, Time reports. At the forefront of the new wave of Evangelicals, the hyper-energetic Warren launched a worldwide initiative, called PEACE, to use churches to fight poverty and preventable disease. He plans to mobilize a billion Christians.

Knowing that churches exist in the poorest, most inaccessible palces in the Third World, even where there are no NGOs, he compares them to desktop computers: "If they could be infected with the virus of good works, the world could be transformed." His new mission requires a redefinition of Evangelism as a postpartisan movement, since fighting world poverty requires support from both parties. That may be why he was able to score both McCain and Obama for a forum Aug. 16. "I want what's good for everybody, not just what's good for me," Warren says. "Who's the best for the nation right now?"