Thursday, August 17, 2006
I’ve transcribed the Rick Warren intro and the relevant part (emboldened) at the end of his segment.
Charlie Rose: Rick Warren is here, he’s the author of “The Purpose Driven Life.” It has sold 21 million copies, had become the best selling hardback non-fiction book, in US publishing history. He is also the family pastor of Saddleback Church, in Lake Forest, California. It is one of the country’s largest and best known churches. Today it has 80,000 people on its roster, and 20,000 people attend service each week. He has also trained pastors from all over the world in his “Purpose Driven Church Strategy.” I am pleased to have him at this table for the first time.So does that mean he's willing to work with incest lovers, polygamists, and child molesters too?
Rick Warren: Thank you Charlie, it’s good to be with you, I’m a big fan.
[Skip to 23:15]
Rick Warren: There are three things that changed my life, Charlie, four years ago. All I wanted to do was pastor one church for life and train other pastors and I had determined that I was never going to go on television or the radio, put our services on, because I didn’t want to be a televangelist. I think always being in the spotlight blinds you. And then three things happened.
First, my wife got a real heart for people dying of HIV/AIDS. And she began to realize--and right after that she got cancer. The more she began to talk to me about it, the more it grabbed my heart, and I thought, ‘how did I miss this?’ The number one killer of people under the age of sixty, in the world, is AIDS. People don’t know that. In America, the face of AIDS is a white gay guy. But really the face of AIDS around the world is a black or brown woman. More women have AIDS than men. And actually more children have AIDS than homosexuals do.
And so as she began to talk about it, it began to grab my heart too, and so I went with her to south Africa. She was going to Mozambique [?], in South Africa, because we were trying to learn from the Africans, how to do ministry to people with AIDS. I taught--I did what I did, I train leaders. We did a three day seminar, and we broadcast to 400 sites across Africa, trained about 80,000 lay leaders and pastors, and I thought, ‘that’s why I’m here, good work,’ -for a week.
But then I said, take me out to a village. And so they took me out to a village, I said, ‘I want to just see a typical church.’ We go out to this village and the jeep and it’s 75 people meeting in a tent, literally, that’s all they’ve got. They don’t have a building, they’ve got a tent. And it’s 50 adults, and 25 kids orphaned by AIDS. And this little church is caring for these children, they’re growing a garden to feed them, doing a little school there, [the] kids are sleeping in a tent. And I thought, ‘this church is doing more to help the poor, than my mega-church.’ And it just rocked my world.
Charlie Rose: Okay, so you come to this realization, how did you move from, ‘this is going to change my life,’ to action?
Rick Warren: Well I went back and I began -- I’m a pastor, so obviously I start reading the Bible, and I start the Gospels over and over, ‘what did Jesus do? What did Jesus do?’ And I realize two things. First, five things Jesus did, were the antidotes to the five biggest problems in the world.
He Planted a church, he said “I will build my church.” He Equipped servant leaders, spend three years discipling the disciples. He Cared for the sick--he Assisted the poor, he Cared for the sick, and he Educated the next generation. And I could go into that in detail, but they’re the antidotes to these five problems. Then I said, ‘How did you do it? You wouldn’t have left us without a strategy. And I found the answer in a passage in Matthew 10 and Luke 10, where Jesus sends his first followers out, and he says this--there’s a whole list of things to do which I don’t have time to go into, but one of them, he says, “When you go into a village, you find the man of peace.” Find the man of peace. There’s a man of peace in every village, in every government, in every business, in every church. I’ve found them all around the world.
And so I said, ‘What is the man of peace?’ He said, ‘When you find the man of peace, if he’s open and he’s willing to work with you, you bless him and you start your work there. If the guy’s not open to working with you, you dust the dust off your shoes and go to the next village, because you can always someone to work with.’ The man of peace is open and influential. By the way, it doesn’t have to be a man.
Charlie Rose: I was going to say…
Rick Warren: Could be a woman. Might be the woman of peace, might be the elderly grandmother of the village that everybody knows.
Charlie Rose: Right, right, so you find them and if they’re open..
Rick Warren: And here’s the other thing, the man of peace does not have to be a Christian believer. Could be Muslim, could be Jewish. Because, Jesus said--when Jesus said “find the man of peace,” there were no Christians yet. Jesus hadn’t died on the cross, there was no resurrection. He just saying go out and find somebody to work with.
Here’s an interesting thing, when I go out and I start telling people, ‘do you want to work with us on poverty, disease, AIDS, illiteracy, injustice?’ I often find people are more unwilling to work with us, than we are willing to work with them.
In other words, we’re saying, ‘You don’t have to change your beliefs for us to work with you.’ If you can only work with people that you agree with, then most of the world you’re ruling out, okay? I don’t insist that a Muslim change his belief for me to work on poverty. I don’t even insist that a gay person has to change their beliefs, they’re not going to accept my belief, or I’m not going to accept theirs.
But I just met with the president--the co-founder of ACT-UP. Eric Sawyer. And I said, Eric, how can I help you get your message--I know you care about people who are dying, how can I help you get your message out? He said, ‘Use your moral authority.’ I’m working with these guys. And so, I’m looking for a coalition of civility, which means let’s get back to the original meaning of tolerance.
Tolerance used to mean, I respect you even though I may totally disagree with you, I’m going to treat you with dignity and respect, and we can dialogue and let’s see what do on the split. You don’t have to compromise, I don’t have to compromise, let’s work on the 80% we agree on, okay?
Today tolerance means all ideas are equally valid. Well that’s nonsense. It’s just illogical. And so if we could get a coalition of civility going, I would love--you know Wilberforce, there’s a movie coming out on this next year, because it’s an anniversary of the man who lead the abolition of slavery. And one of his goals was what he called the reformation of manners. We need a Wilberforce in the twenty first century.
Charlie Rose: Well said. Thank you for coming, I hope we can do this again.
Rick Warren: I would love to do it sometime.
Charlie Rose: Rick Warren is all the things that he has said, and he is also the leader of a very strong church and has written a book, and other books that have had a tremendous, not only sales, but also influence.