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Sorry Haters, But Amy Barrett is Not Part of a Cult

Sorry Haters, But Amy Barrett is Not Part of a Cult

Slate and MSNBC are on the same page here

Amy Coney Barrett faced the wrath of anti-Catholics during her confirmation hearings for the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

The same anti-Catholic rhetoric has emerged once again as her name is rumored to be on the short list to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy. Democrat Senate candidate and conspiracy theorist Richard Painter insists Barrett belongs to a cult called People of Praise.

University of California San Diego Thomas Csordas, an anthropologist, told Slate that he “would definitely not use the term cult in its popular sense.” Slate continued:

For one, it is not terribly secretive other than keeping its membership list private. It has a detailed website, and Lent, its current leader—who was elected by a board and is term-limited—cheerfully agreed to an interview. Csordas describes the group as theologically conservative, with a hierarchical leadership structure. But Lent said the group was also deeply inspired by the communitarian ethos of the 1960s counterculture. Group members often make an effort to live near each other in certain neighborhoods. Single people sometimes live with families, and there are some households of single men or single women living together. Members pledge to donate 5 percent of their gross income, and many give more, with the idea of supporting fellow members.

People of Praise isn’t even a pure Catholic group because “it accepts members from many Christian traditions.” The group’s “theological requirement of membership is to be baptized Christian and to believe the Nicene Creed, a standard Christian statement of faith.”

The argument is so ridiculous that even Slate published a piece defending Barrett and MSNBC host Chris Hayes begged people to “stop with the ‘cult’ stuff.”

I think Heaton may be asking too much from Painter, who has also demanded an investigation into Kennedy’s retirement.

Painter has been spouting off a New York Times article from 2017 that certainly makes it seem like People of Praise is a cult.

I now have a lot of respect for Ruth Graham at Slate because she reached out to People of Praise and spoke with them one-on-one.

The NYT also spoke with leader Craig S. Lent, but after reading Graham’s article, I wonder how much the Grey Lady left on the editing floor.

The left, who is recently obsessed with The Handmaid’s Tale and constantly preaching that we’re headed towards a dystopian theocracy, have zeroed in on the People of Praise. The People of Praise have a handmaiden, which had the whole anti-Barrett, Handmaid’s Tale mongering crowd in an uproar. Graham found out it’s not as sinister as others make you believe:

After about six years of participation, members can opt to commit to living in the community permanently, a ceremony that consists of pledging to attend weekly meetings and, as Lent paraphrased it, “to care for each other physically, financially, materially, and spiritually.” The term handmaiden was chosen in 1971, 14 years before Margaret Atwood’s novel The Handmaid’s Tale, to evoke the Biblical Mary’s description of herself as a “handmaid of the Lord,” or a woman who has an important relationship with God. “It has acquired worse resonances, and all we were looking for was a neutral term,” Lent said, explaining the recent change to “woman leader.”

People of Praise changed the wording. They now use “woman leader” instead of handmaiden.

Abortion has also been used as a way to attack People of Praise and Barrett. Lent told Slate that “the group considers abortion a ‘morally wrong act’ but takes no position on abortion policy.” In fact, the group compared “it to the way that greed is morally wrong but what that should mean for policy is up to individual discernment.”


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Even the NYT’s version doesn’t sound cultish. Many religious people choose someone they trust to be their guide, someone with whom they feel free to speak openly and to whom they look to give them a reality check when they’re in doubt, or when they seem to be going astray.

“Now she wants a seat on SCOTUS for the sole purpose of overturning Roe v. Wade. The answer is NO.”

It’s almost like the stupid proggies don’t understand that “elections have consequences.”

DieJustAsHappy | July 4, 2018 at 3:58 pm

People of Praise is new to me. This article plus reading “Who We Are”* from this article I found quite informative and any concerns I might have had have been alleviated.

It sounds very much like people who desire to grow deeper in their faith through relationship, mentoring, and service with others. Its origin is with laity and seems to want to (how to say this and be accurate?) contend with and overcome “barriers” that have exited between Christians for years.

I would say more power to them and they be blessed in their endeavors.


They look like a mildly squishy but good-hearted, dedicated Christian group, emphasis on outreach and preaching by action.

If the New York Times is freaked out by that, good heavens, how would they cope with something unusual like a Lay Dominican? Those guys are (gasp!) all Catholic!

Selective and recycled-child (i.e. sacrificial rites) adopted by Progressive and Liberal sects of the Pro-Choice Church are cults offerings under the Twilight Faith (and Amendment).

As for the left’s “handmaiden” myth, that would be denying women franchise or two choices too late.

Cults receive their inspiration from the twilight fringe (i.e. beyond the logical domains). Cults conflate logical domains (e.g. extrapolation of the scientific logical domain to liberal proportion) in a cargo cult science. Cults deny life deemed unworthy and Plan her sacrifice for secular rewards (e.g. wealth, pleasure, leisure, narcissism, democratic leverage). Cults claim hidden knowledge beyond the limited scientific logical domain established through observation, reproduction, and deduction, where accuracy is inversely proportional to time (forward and backward) and space (near and far) offsets from an established frame of reference.

DINORightMarie | July 4, 2018 at 5:17 pm

In the secular world these would be called “mentors” or “accountability partners.”

Much ado about nothing – but, definitely a great way to destroy a woman’s body of work, her career……sounds just like another typical day in the life of a Democrat.

Do it’s not Catholic, not strict in its beliefs and not a cult. Do they do any fact checking at all?

I don’t care what the Daily Caller says, I seriously doubt that Barrett will be the President’s nominee. She just isn’t what I think he’s after for the SC.

We should be able to predict these things fairly well by now. But deliberately misunderstanding Trump has turned into such an industry that I suppose most observers will remain baffled by most everything he does.

    Andy C. in reply to tom_swift. | July 5, 2018 at 1:31 am

    She may very well be, simply because she is a woman. There IS the school of thought that Commiecrats will find it more difficult to attack a woman without their own having a cow on them. Whether it’s true or not is another matter entirely.

    Milhouse in reply to tom_swift. | July 5, 2018 at 2:56 am

    She may very well be, precisely because if she’s nominated the Dems will be unable to resist displaying outright anti-Catholic bigotry, which will motivate a good proportion of what’s left of their Catholic base to stay home in November, if not to vote Rep.

The group’s “theological requirement of membership is to be baptized Christian and to believe the Nicene Creed

So. Roman religious politics of 290 AD governs?