World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Promise Keepers

Promise Keepers logo.

Promise Keepers is a Christian organization for men. While it originated in the United States, independent branches are established in Canada and Bruce Wilkinson developed the widely used video curriculum, Personal Holiness in Times of Temptation, as a part of "The Biblical Manhood" series for Promise Keepers.


  • Beliefs 1
  • History 2
  • Criticism 3
  • See also 4
  • References 5
  • Further reading 6
    • Books 6.1
    • Other 6.2
  • External links 7


The core beliefs of the Promise Keepers, outlined in the Seven Promises, consist of the following:

  1. A Promise Keeper is committed to honoring Jesus Christ through worship, prayer and obedience to God's Word in the power of the Holy Spirit.
  2. A Promise Keeper is committed to pursuing vital relationships with a few other men, understanding that he needs brothers to help him keep his promises.
  3. A Promise Keeper is committed to practising spiritual, moral, ethical and sexual purity.
  4. A Promise Keeper is committed to building strong marriages and families through love, protection, and Biblical values.
  5. A Promise Keeper is committed to supporting the mission of his church by honoring and praying for his pastor and by actively giving his time and resources.
  6. A Promise Keeper is committed to reaching beyond any racial and denominational barriers to demonstrate the power of Biblical unity.
  7. A Promise Keeper is committed to influencing his world, being obedient to the Great Commandment (Mark 12:30-31) and the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20).


Promise Keepers was founded in 1990 by University of Colorado's Event Center. From that point, the Promise Keepers' membership gradually grew. By the time of the first official PK conference in July 1991, approximately 4200 attended. The organization was incorporated as a nonprofit in the state of Colorado in December 1990.

What Makes a Man?, Promise Keepers' first hardbound book written for the organization, was published by The Navigators' Navpress publishing arm in 1992 for its first Folsom Field gathering in June of that year. James Dobson had McCartney on his Focus on the Family nationwide radio program that same month. McCartney resigned his coaching position in 1994 in order to focus his attention on the organization.

Promise Keepers' most notable event was its Stand in the Gap: A Sacred Assembly of Men open-air gathering at the National Mall in Washington, D.C. on October 4, 1997. C-SPAN carried the event live in its entirety. It was reported at the time to be the largest gathering of men in American history, surpassing even the Million Man March.[2] Admission to the regional rallies can cost $60 USD, which has caused some numbers to drop, with many men opting to attend the free Washington rallies instead.

McCartney resigned as president on October 1, 2003 after a personal leave of absence. Thomas Fortson, previously the group's executive vice president for administration and operations since 1996, became the group's president and CEO the same day.

On September 10, 2008 McCartney came out of five years retirement to become Promise Keepers CEO/Chairman. Along with McCartney's placement, Raleigh Washington, former Promise Keepers vice president of ministry advancement and McCartney's Road To Jerusalem ministry collaborative partner, was named president of Promise Keepers.

Promise Keepers has continued to grow worldwide. Some of this is attributed to their non-allegiance to any particular denomination, as they welcome men from all church and non-church walks. This makes it one of the largest combined male church groups in the world



  • - Official Website - United States
  • - Promise Keepers Canada
  • - Promise Keepers New Zealand

External links

  • Anderson, Connie (1997). "Visions of Involved Fatherhood: Pro-Feminists and 'Promise Keepers.'" Paper, annual meeting, American Sociological Association, Toronto.
  • Bellant, Russ (1995). "Promise Keepers: Christian Soldiers for Theocracy". In Berlet, Chip. Eyes Right: Challenging the Right Wing Backlash. Boston: South End Press. p. 81–85. ISBN 978-0-89608-523-7. Also available at
  • Berkowitz, Bill (1996). "Promise Keepers: Brotherhood and Backlash." Culture Watch, September (1,4).
  • Conason, Joe, Alfred Ross, and Lee Cokorinos (October 7, 1996). "The Promise Keepers Are Coming: The Third Wave of the Religious Right". The Nation.
  • Everton, Sean (2001). "Religious Revival or Third Wave of the Religious Right?" Review of Religious Research 43 (1):51–69.
  • Heath, Melanie A (2003). "Soft-Boiled Masculinity: Renegotiating Gender and Racial Ideologies in the Promise Keepers Movement". Gender and Society 17 (3): 423–444.  


  • Brickner, Bryan W. (1999). The Promise Keepers: Politics and Promises. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books. ISBN 978-0-7391-0008-0.
  • Bartkowski, John P. (2004). The Promise Keepers: Servants, Soldiers, and Godly Men. Piscataway, NJ: Rutgers University Press. ISBN 978-0-8135-3335-3.
  • Claussen, Dane S. (1999). Standing on the Promises: The Promise Keepers and the Revival of Manhood. Cleveland, OH: The Pilgrim Press. ISBN 978-0-8298-1307-4.
  • Claussen, Dane S. (2000). The Promise Keepers: Essays on Masculinity & Christianity. Jefferson, NC: McFarland. ISBN 978-0-7864-0700-2.
  • Hardisty, Jean V. (1999). Mobilizing Resentment: Conservative Resurgence from the John Birch Society to the Promise Keepers. Boston: Beacon Press. ISBN 978-0-8070-4316-5.
  • Novosad, Nancy (2000). Promise Keepers: Playing God. Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books, 2000.
  • Williams, Rhys H. (2001). Promise Keepers and the New Masculinity: Private Lives and Public Morality. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books. ISBN 978-0-7391-0230-5.


Further reading

  1. ^ "Promise Keepers' Core Values". Retrieved 2007-02-10. 
  2. ^ Loose, Cindy (February 5, 1997). "Promise Keepers Headed for the Mall; Men's Christian Group Plans Oct. 4 Rally". The Washington Post. Retrieved on February 29, 2012.
  3. ^ "Viewpoint:Promise Keepers Pose A Real Threat". National Organization for Women. Retrieved on February 29, 2012.
  4. ^ Schindler, Amy. 1998. "Power, Patriarchy, and the Promise Keepers: The Pleasure of Religious Ecstasy." Paper, annual meeting, American Sociological Association, Toronto.
  5. ^ Conrad, Browyn Kara (2006). "Neo-Institutionalism , Social Movements, and the Cultural Reproducation of a Mentalité: Promise Keepers Reconstruct the Madonna/Whore Complex". The Sociological Quarterly (Midwest Sociological Society) 47 (2): 305–331.  
  6. ^ "Promise Keepers (PK), Pro and Con: PART 1".  "Some Christian Fundamentalists have criticized PK for being too ecumenical, too New Age and too 'sissified.' 4 PK has been criticized for its 'unionism', 'anti-denominationalism' and 'watering down of doctrine.'" - Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance


See also

The group was also criticized for doctrinal compromises and inconsistent doctrines. Raymond Hartwig, president of the South Dakota district of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, commented: "They use the Bible in a very simplistic form, as a springboard to jump into the law."[6]

According to Madonna/whore view of female sexuality and a view of the male sex drive as uncontrollable.[5]


This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.