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Old 01-21-2013, 12:40 PM
robert_columbia robert_columbia is offline
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 8,791
High level politicians or government officials who were religious converts while serving.

A few years ago, I remember reading about Tony Blair, PM of the UK, who formally converted to the Roman Catholic Church after leaving his position as PM, though it looks like he was leaning that way for a while but intentionally waited until he left office to formally convert.

What are some recent high-ranking politicians, high-ranking military officials (e.g. Generals and Admirals), executive department heads, high ranking judges, or other high officials who underwent a religious conversion while in office?

Since religious conversion is a complex matter and it is impossible to judge when and if a person truly has a change of heart, I will give this basic definition of "religious conversion" to use as a guide. A person "converts" if they make a public announcement or admission that they have changed their religion, if they undergo a meaningful conversion ritual such as baptism, reciting the shahada, or being circumcised by a rabbi, or if they formally join a religious organization that is not in full communion or fellowship with their previous affiliation. Feel free to bend it to get at the intent of my question.

For the purposes of this question, Atheism counts as a religion and a politician or other government official who publicly announces that they have become an atheist or who formally joins an atheist fellowship counts as a convert.

It looks like Dwight Eisenhower might be an example. He was exposed as a child to Mennonite and Jehovah's Witness beliefs but never formally joined a church until after assuming the US presidency - he was baptized and joined the Presbyterian Church USA while in office.

Leaders of the distant past who are famous for being converts such as Henry VIII of England, Emperor Constantine, or Julian the Apostate are not in scope.
Old 01-21-2013, 01:51 PM
Lord Feldon Lord Feldon is offline
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Central Ohio
Posts: 5,498
The late head of state of Samoa converted to the Bahá'í Faith in 1973.


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