FRIDAY: Will the Meek Inherit Washington?

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WASHINGTON: Are the Promise Keepers nothing more than right-wing zealots determined to force women back into the dark ages of servitude? That's the fear of some feminist organizations, which continued to bash the religious group today as it prepared for a soul-searching extravaganza tomorrow in Washington's National Mall. Leading the charge was National Organization of Women president Patricia Ireland, who today labeled its founders a "Who's Who of the radical right," while accusing them of soft-pedaling the "hard edges" of their political message. But while some of the Keepersí leaders have in the past supported right-wing policies, TIME correspondent Ron Stodghill II reports the group as a whole may not be as radical as its critics charge. "I'm not convinced that it is that extreme," he says. "But if in fact there is an agenda that is political, one has to note that the majority of men in the Promise Keepers don't recognize it as that. In fact, most of them see it simply as a form of spiritual cleansing." The nation will have its chance to decide tomorrow, however, as an expected 700,000 bible-toting followers take the spotlight in the Nation's Capital.