Before September 11, President George W Bush kept his evangelical Christian beliefs largely to himself.
He had turned to God at the age of 40 as a way of kicking alcoholism, and his faith had kept him on the straight and narrow ever since, giving him the drive to reach the White House.
But all that changed on the day of the attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center.
Those close to Mr Bush say that day he discovered his life's mission.
He became convinced that God was calling him to engage the forces of evil in battle, and this one time baseball-team owner from Texas did not shrink from the task.
"We are in a conflict between good and evil. And America will call evil by its name," Mr Bush told West Point graduates in a speech last year.
In this battle, he placed his country firmly on the side of the angels.
"There is wonder-working power in the goodness and idealism of the American people," he said in this year's State of the Union address.
This concept of placing America in God's camp sticks in the throat of a lot of American clergy.
"It is by no means certain that we are as pure as the driven snow or that our international policy is so pure," says Fritz Ritsch, Presbyterian minister in Bethesda, Maryland.
The Reverend Ritsch says it also makes their job as clerics harder by giving Christians in America an easy way out.