A group of conservative evangelical leaders met in Texas last weekend and endorsed a Roman Catholic for president. Given the history of evangelical antipathy toward the theological underpinnings of the Roman Catholic Church, that in itself signals a remarkable evolution (pardon the word), along with a considerable amount of political pragmatism.

The blessing of what was once called the “Religious Right” fell on the once-married Rick Santorum and not the thrice married and more recent convert to Catholicism, Newt Gingrich.

The endorsement came on the same weekend when Tebow-mania was at its height, as were the ratings for CBS, which carried the Denver Broncos-New England Patriots football game. Tim Tebow’s Broncos were crushed by the superior and less openly religious Patriots.

Despite evidence that politics (and sports) cannot deliver America from its collective sins, evangelicals repeatedly search for an earthly savior. So desperate are they to find this deliverer that they have glommed onto the Catholic Mr. Santorum, a man whose religion many of them vilify and hold in utter contempt, in hopes of trumpeting their conservative values and faith-based initiatives in the coming election. In so doing, they make a mistake their Scriptures warn against.

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