Jim Wallis Gets $150,000 from George Soros

Jim Wallis and George Soros

The Blaze outlined in July numerous financial ties between left-wing billionaire George Soros and liberal Christian group, Sojourners — the magazine and larger organization whose founder, Jim Wallis, long denied any such ties to Soros until investigations forced him to admit his connection to the liberal billionaire financier.

The cat long since out of the bag, Wallis presumably had little problem confirming that Soros’ Open Society Foundation just gave another $150,000 to Sojourners.

Marvin Olasky, writing for World Magazine, says Wallis sent him an email noting the latest Soros donation:

[It's] more evidence that Wallis and Sojourners are on the left, even though the organization appeals to young evangelicals by claiming to be apolitical—in Wallis’ summation, not left but “deep.”

Wallis defended his decision to solicit and accept Soros funds by pointing me to William Booth, founder of the Salvation Army, who accepted donations from disreputable sources. Booth, though, took contributions from liquor-sellers and gamblers who knew he would undercut their endeavors. Soros gives money to Wallis to promote the political views they share.

Olasky last year headed investigations into Wallis’ financial ties to Soros, writing:

George Soros, one of the leading billionaire leftists—he has financed groups promoting abortion, atheism, same-sex marriage, and gargantuan government—bankrolled Sojourners with a $200,000 grant in 2004. A year later, here’s how Jim rebutted a criticism of “religious progressives” for being allied with Soros and MoveOn.org: “I know of no connections to those liberal funds and groups that are as direct as the Religious Right’s ties to right-wing funders.”

Since then Sojourners has received at least two more grants from Soros organizations. Sojourners revenues have more than tripled—from $1,601,171 in 2001-2002 to $5,283,650 in 2008-2009—as secular leftists have learned to use the religious left to elect Obama and others.

As Christianity Today reported, Wallis tried to dismiss the funding claims, saying that Glenn Beck (unconnected to the accusations) and Olasky lie “for a living.” In an interview with Patheos, Wallis suggested Olasky was mistaken:

“It’s not hyperbole or overstatement to say that Glenn Beck lies for a living. I’m sad to see Marvin Olasky doing the same thing. No, we don’t receive money from Soros. Given the financial crisis of nonprofits, maybe Marvin should call Soros and ask him to send us money.

So, no, we don’t receive money from George Soros. Our books are totally open, always have been. Our money comes from Christians who support us and who read Sojourners. That’s where it comes from. In fact, we’ve had funding blocked, this year and last, by liberal foundations who didn’t like our stance on abortion.

Wallis added that Olasky should “check his facts” and not imitate Beck, however Olasky—armed with documentation to back up his claims—posted links that verifiably tied Sojourners to Soros. Wallis soon phoned Olasky with an apology and an appeal for forgiveness (which was granted). Wallis also released a statement that claimed he simply did not “recall the details” of Sojourners funding and that he should have learned more before responding.

Wallis founded Sojourners in 1971 (originally called The Post American) with this mission: “…to articulate the biblical call to social justice, inspiring hope and building a movement to transform individuals, communities, the church, and the world.”

Sojourners’ focus on social justice over the years has led to left-wing political stands mixed with the Bible, including Wallis’ appearance at a liberal Christian music festival and his latest assertion that the Wall Street protesters “stand with Jesus.” Apart from abortion (which Wallis has said should be reduced), Wallis is about as far from conservative as you can get.