BLOGWhat You’ve Accomplished in the Battle for Religious Liberty This Year

By Maureen Collins Posted on: | June 19, 2019

A lot can happen in a year.

And thanks to your steadfast support of Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), a lot of great things have happened when it comes to protecting your religious freedom. Since June of 2018…

  • You helped Jack Phillips win twice. Cake artist Jack Phillips declined to create a custom cake celebrating a same-sex marriage in 2012. Because of this, the Colorado Civil Rights Commission went after him. Last June, Jack won against the commission in a 7-2 decision at the U.S. Supreme Court. Then, mere weeks later, the commission launched another prosecution against Jack because his shop declined to create a cake celebrating a gender transition. The commission used this complaint to go after Jack a second time. So Jack sued the state in federal court and got it to back off.
  • You helped Barronelle Stutzman get a second chance at victory. Just like Jack, this 74-year-old grandmother and floral artist has been fighting for her religious freedom for years. In 2013, Barronelle respectfully declined to create floral arrangements to celebrate a longtime customer’s same-sex wedding. The U.S. Supreme Court sent her case back to the Washington State Supreme Court in light of the ruling in Jack’s case.
  • You helped pro-life pregnancy centers win at the Supreme Court. A California law forced pro-life pregnancy centers to advertise for abortion. But last June, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of these pro-life pregnancy centers—delivering a blow to abortion advocates in the state. You helped achieve this huge win for free speech and life!
  • You helped Chief Cochran finally get justice. Chief Cochran dedicated over 30 years of his life to fighting fires and protecting the communities where he lived and worked. And then suddenly, despite being one of the most decorated firefighters of this generation, he was fired by the City of Atlanta because he wrote a book about his faith. Thankfully, in October, Chief Cochran finally received justice. The City of Atlanta agreed to pay him a settlement, recognizing that Chief Cochran had suffered unconstitutional harm

These were huge victories in the battle for religious freedom. And your prayers and support helped make them possible. But the battle continues—and it’s getting more heated every day.

Right now, far-left progressive groups—like the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC)—are trying to take away your ability to freely live out your faith. These groups, along with other activists, are creating a culture of intimidation and bullying. People who hold a biblical view of God, morality, and especially marriage are increasingly targeted for lawsuits or punishment.

Just look at what has happened to Jack and Barronelle, who are both still facing threats to their freedom: 

  • Jack is back in court. The same attorney who filed the second complaint against Jack is now suing him in state court. The new lawsuit rehashes many of the old claims from the original complaint and tries to deny the one detail that matters most: Jack serves everyone; he simply cannot express all messages or celebrate all events through his custom cakes.
  • Barronelle is going back to the U.S. Supreme Court. When the U.S. Supreme Court sent Barronelle’s case back to the Washington State Supreme Court, the court ruled against her a second time. This means Barronelle will be back at the U.S. Supreme Court fighting for her religious freedom yet again.

With these new threats, it would be easy for Jack and Barronelle to feel disheartened. But even in the face of this intimidation, Scripture reminds us, “Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” (1 Corinthians 13:6-7).

Jack and Barronelle have trusted. They have put their hope in the Lord. And they have persevered. Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) has stood with both of them throughout their battles for freedom because, as the Scripture says, love protects. And we will continue to protect your religious freedom from this kind of intimidation and bullying.  

But we can only do so with God’s provision and your support.

Right now, we are trusting God to help us finish our fiscal year strong. We need to raise $1.2 million by June 30 to protect freedom in the coming year. Will you help us? Any gift you give today will help protect your religious freedom.

Thank you for your generous support!

DONATE

Maureen Collins

Web Writer

Maureen has a passion for writing and politics, and her work has appeared on The Federalist and MRCTV.org.

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