Thousands of people gathering around a large vertical object to discuss plans of posterity. NO, I am not talking about the Tower of Babel. I’m talking about Glenn Beck’s Restoring Honor rally at Washington DC last weekend.
The event was described as a “church picnic with a buzz” and the “Waterworld of white self-pity”. The attendance figures are disputed but Newser website has a few estimates, ranging from 78,000 to 650,000. The latter suggested as the high end by Glenn Beck himself.
Why are church people, even Mormon church people, so infatuated with numbers? And why do churches say they have more people than they actually do? In my blog post “How to estimate church attendance” I interpret how the denominations arrive at their numbers.
As for an evangelical response to the rally, check out this SLTRIB article on who is friendly and who isn’t and this one on the weirdness of Beck as a Mormon who is leading conservative Christians. I think Get Religion was right in a scary kinda way to call it “Civil Religion”.