Give us liberty, one occasionally wants to cry, echoing the great Patrick Henry's liberty-or-death moment at St. John's Church in Richmond. A great moment it was, as schoolchildren may still be taught. There was more, nonetheless, to Patrick Henry than lung power. The man had heart, and the soul to go with it.
Baylor University history professor Thomas S. Kidd attempts too much with this thought-provoking, meticulously researched book. All at the same time it is a history of evangelical Protestantism in America, a study that links the religious beliefs of our Founders into a political alliance and, finally, a meditation on religion's role in today's increasingly secular American political scene.