June 16th, 2011
Cuccinelli encourages pastors to take a political stand on social issues | Alicia Constant : World Magazine
Virginia Attorney General Kenneth Cuccinelli urged pastors to speak out politically Thursday morning at a breakfast for Fredericksburg-area pastors.
Over 250 church leaders attended "Christian Citizenship and Godly Government" breakfast sponsored by the conservative Virginia Christian Alliance.
Cuccinelli told pastors that they shouldn't be afraid to talk about candidates and issues. While churches can't endorse candidates or advocate the defeat of others without losing their tax-exempt status, pastors can personally get involved in the political process and even preach on social issues. Churches can also encourage voting through non-partisan voter registration campaigns and non-partisan voter guides, although they are barred from telling members who to vote for......................
Alliance president Donald Blake says church leaders are looking for assurances that they can address public policy issues from a biblical perspective without risking their tax-exempt status.
He said that it's important for pastors to be involved in the political process today because they are continuing the legacy of the pastors involved in the nation's founding.
"If you go all the way back to the founding of the country, to the Constitution, the Mayflower Compact, the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, pastors had influence on the men who wrote that," Blake said. "Pastors were there, church leaders, solid Christians were involved in the beginning days of our country. There's no reason they shouldn't be involved today... influencing people in lawmaking positions."
"Pro-choice groups and other activist people and organizations want to silence pastors and organizations with misinformation regarding church and state issues, tax status and other under-handed practices to keep the pulpits silent," read a statement on the Virginia Conservative Alliance's website.
Christian Citizenship and Godly Government Breakfast with Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli
The Virginia Christian Alliance and the Bragg Hill Family Life Center presented "Christian Citizenship and Godly Government" Almost 300 clergy, Christian leaders and concerned Virginians attended to hear the keynote speakers. The news after the event spread across the state and beyond as a powerful message from the Virginia Attorney General called upon pastors to speak out on social issues. The VCA knows the culture wars are raging and the other side is winning and urges the leadership in the church house to take a stand. Speaker Terry Beatley's message of taking the Counter Initiative (Hosea 4:6) is a call to action to all Pastors, lay leaders and church members across the state.
The Associated Press : Cuccinelli tells pastors to speak out against 'the other side'
AP:Virginia's outspoken, conservative attorney general urged pastors and other church leaders to speak out politically Thursday, telling them that failure to do so concedes the battle over Christian values to "the other side."
Should Pastors Preach Politics?
(clip begins 21 seconds from the beginning)
"You can speak to any issue in America from the pulpit, full-throated, ears pinned back," Kenneth Cuccinelli told about 250 Fredericksburg-area clergy at a "Christian Citizenship and Godly Government" breakfast.
Virginia’s Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli was asked to addressed a breakfast meeting of the Virginia Christian Alliance (VCA) with the theme of “Christian Citizenship and Godly Government” on what pastors are allowed under the law to say from the pulpit. The group of nearly 300 was comprised of a number of Pastors from the African-American community who see the basic morality of the country in severe decline. As ministers, they have an obligation to lead their congregation, and that leadership includes pointing out the actions that are leading to the moral decay in America.
The conversation included the destruction of the family as a unit and the assault on marriage in this country. Abortion and “same sex” marriage were identified as as two of the leading causes in the degradation of the family.
The article continues HERE or after the photo gallery and document downloads from the breakfast program.
Important Documents for Pastors and Churces
- Political Activities of Pastors: What is Permissible and What is Forbidden: Page 1 and Page 2
- Political Guidelines for Pastors and Churces: Page 1 and Page 2
- Breakfast Program: Page 1 and Page 2
Photo Gallery Christian Citizenship and Godly Government Breakfast June 16, 2011
Sponsors of the event include Regent University, The Hertiage Foundation, Liberty Law University and the Center for Security Policy
The anti-family and anti-Christian group Americans United for Separation of Church and State sees a threat in groups like the VCA, not only for their strong Christian beliefs, but because the group brings together African-Americans and Whites in a way that highlights their similarities and shared Conservative values when it comes to subjects like abortion and homosexual marriage. The threat is that the African-American community will become aware that their basic beliefs and core values are far closer to those of Conservatives than to the Democratic Party. And when African-American Pastors are told that the government has no right to force them to hold their tongue on issues of morality, the left wing lies begin to unravel in the sunlight.
As an example of the lies and distortions from the anti-religious AU, consider this paragraph from their post on the subject:
Regardless of the specifics of his remarks, however, I had to wonder what Cuccinelli was doing there in the first place. Turns out he wanted to help the VCA, a hardball Religious Right outfit, prod churches to get more involved in political issues such as abortion and same-sex marriage.
First off, Cuccinelli was there because he was asked to speak to the legal issues of what can and what cannot be said in church without running afoul of IRS or election laws. A valid question that the AU would prefer to keep the Pastors in the dark about. That way, their threats of litigation are more effective than when the pastor knows his rights. How can knowledge of the law be a bad thing? But the last sentence is where the AU pours on the propaganda. Political issues such as abortion and same-sex marriage? Political issues? Killing unborn children and subverting Holy Matrimony are moral issues, not political issues!
Cuccinelli referred to Dr. Martin Luther King and what King called our National Creed. That is the one line in the Declaration if Independence that states we hold these truths to be self evident that all men are created equal, endowed by their creator… Cuccinelli placed emphasis on the “endowed by their creator”.
He went on to talk about the system of checks and balances that were set up by the founding fathers that include the checks and balances between the Federal Government and the states. He mentioned the suit against the Healthcare legislation as an example of the state checking the wrongful reach of the federal government and compared that to the check in the other direction – from the federal government to the states when the feds challenged the states on Civil Rights. These checks and balances go both ways.
Referring to a bumper sticker he was given at the event that reads “REAL Men Marry Women” which is intended as a statement against homosexual marriage, Cuccinelli pointed out that it also had another meaning. One problem we face in this country is an out-of-wedlock problem, and the AG said real men should marry the mother of the children they help bring into the world. Cuccinelli challenged the audience to work to end the out-of-wedlock, divorce rate and other issues as a place to start fixing marriage and family issues. We have to start in our own house to have credibility on the issue.
Cuccinelli stated that there are two things he wants everyone to remember:
Government has never, cannot and will not ever love anyone!
Jesus loves everyone!
A few quotes from the video:
“As attorney General, I have an obligation to get the law right, even if I don’t like it. And I’ve issued opinions I don’t like.”
“Google up Humanist Manifesto.”
“I would encourage those of you who are pastoring in black churches to look at the history of that (abortion) movement. Go read Margaret Sangers letters about the Harlem Project and what she wanted to do. And I would also challenge you to pull out the map of Virginia and look at where the abortion clinics are. Go look at that. And if that dosen’t make you mad, well then you are a lot calmer person than I am. That makes me mad.”
Specifically concerning do’s and don’t in the pulpit:
“You will be surprised to learn just how much freedom you have. You can speak to any issue in America, from the pulpit, full-throated, ears pinned back. You don’t have to hold back at all. Any issue at all. You can be critical of votes elected officials have taken on those issues. Now be careful, don’t cross the line into un-endorsing. Don’t say ‘we need to defeat this person’ while you’re standing there in the pulpit. But when you get down out of church you can hold fund-raisers, you can put your name on candidates, you can identify yourself as the pastor of thus and such church but it needs to say something like ‘for identification purposes only’. You never want to lead anyone to possibly believe that you’re, on behalf of a church, endorsing a candidate.”
“You can participate in these elections on a personal basis in the manner that anyone else can.”
“You can run for office. Don’t set aside that notion.”
“You’ve gotta make sure you’re not formally dragging your church in. And if you let me, as candidate A come and speak at your church, you need to be prepared to let my opponent show up.”
“When you look at abortion, you’re either a human being, or you’re not. Either God has created you or he hasn’t.”
“If you don’t speak to them (issues like abortion, marriage, divorce) I would respectfully suggest that the absence of your addressing it will not go unnoticed. And you will diminish the importance of those issues in the eyes of the people in your church. It does work both ways, you can speak to the issues, but you’ve heard the old saying ‘not to decide is to decide’ – if you don’t address these areas you suggest by your inaction to the people in your church that it’s not worth their pastor’s time”.
“If you are not incorporating this very important part of the lives of the people in your churches into your message to them about how their faith applies in the real world, well you’re missing a pretty big part. And there are ways to do that that don’t subject you to the federal government’s oversight. The IRS specifically.”
Cuccinelli emphasized that if Christians and pastors don’t become involved that they have just left the field to the other side. He cautioned the pastors to remain in the clear, black and white areas of the law and avoid even the gray areas.
Attorney General Cuccinelli closed by asking the pastors to keep all of the leaders from the President on down in their prayers.
It is sad that groups like Americans United for Separation of Church and State feel the need to attack Attorney General Cuccinelli for outlining the rights of religious leaders in America under the law and encouraging them to speak to the issues that they face while remaining silent on left wing pastors like Jeremiah Wright for speaking their mind on “political” issues. This is a mine field mined with disinformation from these anti-God groups and threats of legal action to silence the moral majority into compliance. And while Cuccinelli clearly has his views, this information is as applicable to Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton and Reverend Wright as it is to the left wing clergy.
Tom Wright is a US Navy Veteran, owns an Insurance Agency and is currently an IT Manager for a Virginia Distributor. He has been published in American Thinker, currently writes for the Richmond Examiner as well as Virginia Right! Blog. Tom lives in Hanover County, Va and is involved in politics at every level.
The Virginia Christian Alliance thanks our sponsors Regent University, The Heritage Foundation, Liberty Law University and the Center for Secuity Policy. Other sponsors and information are availlable here .