Black churches prove cool to federal grants

Tiny fraction receive monies to aid poor
Only a tiny fraction of black churches have received money to help the poor as a result of the Bush administration’s federal faith-based initiative, and most of those tend to be liberal in their theology and located in the Northeast.

These are among the findings of a first-of-its-kind survey of black churches by the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, a Washington think tank, released September 19.

The survey—conducted among 750 churches between November 2005 and January of this year—was designed to explore how black congregations view the much-discussed effort to make it easier for religious organizations to receive public monies for providing social services, as well as how many and what kind of churches are participating.

The results would seem to tamp down claims for the program’s great reach in the black community, while also allaying critics’ fears that the program would lure influential black pastors into the Republican fold.


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