Preaching: Answering the Call After 30

"A man in politics can do a tremendous amount of good for a large number of people," said Robert P. Layne —and thereupon gave up politics. Explaining that he hoped" to do good for far fewer people but on a more profound basis," Layne, 31, announced last week that in June he will quit his job as a Republican senator in the Kentucky legislature to study for the Episcopal priesthood at Virginia Theological Seminary.

Turning from things secular to sacred has plenty of precedents. Within the past decade, U.S. seminaries have been getting a striking and measurable increase in applications...

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