10/01/2010 08:08 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Religious Groups Join Progressives' 'One Nation Working Together' March

By Jená Lowe
Religion News Service

WASHINGTON (RNS) Faith-based organizations are teaming up with secular and progressive groups for this weekend's (Oct. 2) One Nation Working Together rally.

Left-leaning groups ranging from Sojourners to Pax Christi USA to the Sikh Coalition will join the rally on the National Mall to help focus attention on jobs, civil rights and education.

"All of these core principles are consistent with the core principles of the United Methodist Church," said Wayne Rhodes, spokesman for the church's Washington-based General Board of Church and Society.

Organizers say the rally, coming one month before the midterm elections, is intended to motivate a disillusioned and disgruntled liberal base to head off momentum among Republican and tea party activists who want to retake Congress.

The American Friends Service Committee, a Quaker group, wants to see more government action on humanitarian issues, and hopes to use the rally to express what spokeswoman Alexis Moore called "unheard voices."

"The government should redirect billions of dollars that are allocated for the war and spend it to meet human needs in Afghanistan and at home," said Moore.

Pax Christi USA, a Catholic peace group, wants to redirect funding from the military to jobs and education programs at home, said program associate Amy Watts.

"At the core of this rally is a message of human dignity," Watts said.