The Atlantic

Russell Moore and the Fight for the Soul of the Southern Baptist Convention

The backlash against the conservative evangelical leader reveals deep tensions in his denomination.
Source: Mark Humphrey / AP

On Monday, The Washington Post reported that Russell Moore—the leader of the Southern Baptist Convention’s political arm—might lose his job. The denomination’s executive committee had asked Moore for a private meeting to discuss an unfolding controversy: More than 100 churches are considering cutting off funding from the Convention, according to the Post, and the influential Prestonwood Baptist Church in Texas announced in February that it will temporarily withhold roughly $1 million from the Convention’s cooperative mission programs. The executive committee has recently begun an investigation into why these funds are being withheld.

The proximate cause for the backlash is the election: Moore was hypercritical of Donald Trump, while roughly 81 percent of white evangelicals—which includes a lot of Southern

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