Updates: Volume II, Issue 4
As Truth& Triumph continues to profile individuals whose stands for religious liberty are transforming the legal landscape of America, we want to keep you up-to-date on what’s happening with those whose stories we’ve shared in past issues:
In 2007, New Jersey officials revoked the tax-exempt status of the Boardwalk Pavilion of the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association after the facility declined to host a same-sex ceremony ("Making Waves," Volume II, Issue 2). ADF, representing Ocean Grove, was recently able to get that tax exempt status restored, and the Pavilion is again recognized by state officials as a place of worship. That has positive implications for other aspects of the still-ongoing case between the Association and New Jersey – a case that hinges on recognition of the Association as a worship facility, with freedom to determine what ceremonies take place on its property.
The beautiful hand-carved crèche that Dieter Bayer created for the Washington state capitol two years ago ("A Winding Trail To The Manger," Volume I, Issue 2) won’t be on display this year. State officials have announced their intention to ban all private displays from the capitol – religious and otherwise. The state itself will sponsor a holiday tree devoid of religious overtones.
"It’s a shame that the state would solve its unconstitutional rejection of a Christmas display by banning all individually–placed displays," says ADF attorney Byron Babione. "The state could have simply honored its constitutional duty by treating Christmas – a national holiday celebrated by 95 percent of Americans – equally in the first place."
"Freedom is a fragile thing and is never more than one generation away from extinction. It is not ours by inheritance; it must be fought for and defended constantly by each generation, for it comes only once to a people. Those who have known freedom, and then lost it, have never known it again." Ronald Reagan, Gubernatorial Inaugural Address, January 5, 1967