Read this and other attacks on faith from Weekly Prayer Update 2/5/18 to 2/12/18
1. Decision in Masterpiece Cakeshop
“The justices heard oral arguments in Jack Phillips’ right-of-conscience case on December 5. The day after oral arguments, the justices met in their closed session, voted on the case, and assigned an author to write a majority decision. We don’t know how the justices voted or who is writing the majority decision. The justices will announce their decision sometime before the end of the term in late June. This will be one of the most-watched cases of the term.”
2. Will the Supreme Court grant review in the Rowan County legislative prayer case?
“ADF is watching what the justices do with this important follow-up case to ADF’s 2014 victory at the Supreme Court in Town of Greece v. Galloway, where the Supreme Court upheld the practice of opening town meetings with prayer given by a rotating list of local clergymen and other residents. The county board of Rowan County, North Carolina varied this practice by rotating through the members of the board. The American Civil Liberties Union challenged this practice, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit initially upheld the practice, but on further review agreed with the ACLU that the practice violated the Establishment Clause. All 15 judges on the Fourth Circuit heard the case and ruled against it 10-5. But in a second case, the federal appeals court for Michigan, the Sixth Circuit, also heard a case raising the same issue and upheld the practice of county board members praying to open a meeting, by a 9-6 vote last September. Although only two federal appeals courts have heard this issue about prayer by the members of a county board since Town of Greece was decided, it is extremely rare for two full courts sitting en banc to rule opposite ways on the same legal issue, and by nearly identical votes. Look for the Supreme Court to take up this petition in January. If the Court grants review, oral arguments will likely be in April, with a decision in late June.”
3. NIFLA v. Becerra has huge implications for religious freedom.
National Prayer Points
First Liberty created a cumulative compilation of recent documented instances of hostility toward free religious exercise. It is often cited by lawmakers, educators, opinion leaders, and the media.
International Prayer Points
“One of the most controversial provisions is the right to freedom of religion or belief in Section 26 of the Constitution. Extra scrutiny is urgently required as the provision has given rise to subsequent criminal law amendments to enforce the constitutional protection (or lack thereof) of the right to freedom of religion or belief.”
“North and South Korea share a peninsula and half a name, but they could not be more different in their approach to faith, according to international religious freedom experts. The North Korean regime outlaws nearly all forms of religious practice, sending citizens caught practicing Christianity to political prison camps.”
State Prayer Points
Religious Liberty Legislation
Continue praying consistently and fervently for the successful passage of legislation that effectively protects our Judeo-Christian heritage and religious liberty. Also, pray that bills and resolutions that undermine our First Amendment Rights will be unsuccessful.
The CPCF legal team has researched best practices legislation and provided talking points on various religious freedom topics to assist legislators. Download their Report here.
“A California court has ruled that a Christian baker cannot be forced to bake a wedding cake…because it would violate her First Amendment rights — a decision that runs against a national trend of cases now before the U.S. Supreme Court.”
From FFRF site:”The Freedom From Religion Foundation has ended a Georgia high school marching band’s incorporation of religion into its performances. Last fall, it was reported to FFRF that the director of the Rome High School marching band chose a Christian worship theme for 2017. The performance was called “Alleluia!” which literally translates to “Praise ye Yah,” meaning “Praise the Lord.” Furthermore, the performance featured stained-glass church windows as props and included flags with the names of multiple books from the bible written on them. The musical selection included biblically inspired songs, for example: ‘Praise Ye The God of Gold,’ ‘Sing Aloud to God Our Strength’ and ‘Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.'”
From FFRF site: “A concerned local resident reported that on Jan. 26, 2017, coaches from East Carter High School and West Carter High School (both part of the Carter County Schools system) joined hands in prayer with their teams and cheerleaders after a basketball game. An image of the two teams praying with their coaches was posted on the West Carter High School official Facebook page with the caption: ‘East and West ball players, cheerleaders and coaches joined together for prayer after the game. What a way to end the game! #cometpride #wearecartercounty.'”
“…a federal judge said the state of North Carolina violated civil rights laws when it forced a magistrate to resign because of her beliefs about marriage.”
“A long-standing tradition at a local high school has suddenly been halted after a complaint from an activist organization. At the center of the controversy: praying before school athletic events.”
National Prayer Opportunities
Congressional Prayer: Each week Congress is in session, members of Congressional Prayer Caucus meet before votes to pray in Room 219 of the U.S. Capitol. There are nearly 100 Members of the Congressional Prayer Caucus, an official bipartisan and bicameral caucus of the U.S. Congress. Please commit to praying daily for them, their families, and staff.
“I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.” 1 Tim. 2, Psalm 91
Include: Judicial Branch, Legislative Branch, Executive Branch, Military, Faith Leaders, First Responders, Etc.
In 2015, government leaders spearheaded an effort to call America back to God and prayer. Be part of the Movement — If you are a government leader, church or organization, you can add your name to the list of leaders who are committed to this Call to Prayer for America. Churches and Organizations can contact CPCF to be added to the list. Government Leaders will be automatically added when you sign the Proclamation (document or online). Sign the Proclamation or host a PrayUSA Sunday.
Email me to join the CPCF Prayer Team! Commit to praying for the Members and families of the Congressional Prayer Caucus, The American Prayer Caucus Network, and the CPCFoundation.
Prayer for Anti-Faith Groups
For more information about this prayer initiative, contact Summer Ingram, National Director of Prayer and Mobilization for the Congressional Prayer Caucus Foundation.