Dear Concerned Women for America of Washington Members,
Putting on the mind of Christ, running the race with endurance, having courage, standing fast, these Biblical exhortations depend upon us understanding and believing God’s Word and having a willingness to truthfully and faithfully apply it to our lives. Promoting and protecting Biblical values is one of CWA’s objectives, one that is increasingly challenging in a post-modern, Biblically-illiterate culture. While working at a Christian school, I spotted this on a wall: “Art, like morality, consists of drawing a linesomewhere.” That is a very simple statement with profound meaning, isn’t it? If Bible-believing Christians would draw the moral lines that our God did in His Holy Bible, would our nation, our state, our churches and our families be under such attack by God’s enemies, those who reject His word and rebel against His principles? There’s no question; being a Bible-believing Christian is increasingly difficult in our culture. Peer pressure and the desire to be accepted by others, intimidation, harassment and name-calling tempt us to modify our faith, and compromise or reinterpret the Word of God. Drawing the lines where God draws them should be simply a matter of obedience, but instead it takes a huge amount of courage to go against the flow. The Apostle Paul knew how difficult it was when he exhorted those early and us modern Christians to put on the mind of Christ, run the race with endurance, stand fast, and put on the spiritual armor, “praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Sprit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance ad supplication for all the saints” (Ephesians 6:18)..
The reason I started this action alert with Paul’s exhortations is because of the subject of this alert: the definition of marriage. Merely bringing up the fact that God is the author of marriage as the Creator of Adam and Eve and that Jesus Himself confirmed that definition causes accusations of “Bigot! Hate monger! Homophobe! Intolerant!” I have been called all those by a relative whom I hugged the last time we met and for whom I pray! How about you? Are you willing to challenge the pervasive secularist culture, to keep running the race, putting on the mind of Christ, and standing up for God’s Truth? If so, we ask you to join us in the upcoming legislative battle in Washington State. To change the definition of marriage will make marriage virtually an “empty suit” of no special significance. We are planning meetings around the state for citizens who will stand with us to defend the traditional definition of marriage between one man and one woman only. A “Stand for Marriage” conference will be held in Richland next weekend, but we also have meetings scheduled in the following legislative districts: 5, 10, 14, 19, 21, 25, 26, 30, 41, 44, 45, 47, and 48. Please contact the CWA state office (425-869-1923; firstname.lastname@example.org) for information on the conference as well as the other meeting locations and dates (or watch for our updates). (Please watch the 38 second video clip, attached, by Pastor Ken Hutcherson —as he speaks on the upcoming battle for traditional marriage)
CWA’s founder Beverly LaHaye recently wrote this, “If we lose this battle and marriage is redefined, it will stand for nothing and eventually include everything. I shudder to imagine what bizarre arrangement would not be permitted if marriage has no definition. What impact will this have on our children and grandchildren?” I share Mrs. LaHaye’s concerns, and this is deeply personal! If you agree, please contact your state legislators now and ask them to defend marriage between one man and one woman when this issue arises in our state’s legislature. You may find your legislators’ contact information at http://apps.leg.wa.gov/DistrictFinder/Default.aspx, and you may call them toll-free at 1-800-562-6000. Please also check the national website for information on the so-called “Respect for Marriage Act” which will completely destroy the Defense of Marriage Act passed in 1996 (www.concernedwomen.org). On that same website, you can also find good articles to fortify your arguments in support of traditional marriage.
I agree with another pro-family leader who has said, “This debate will not be decided based on who has the stronger arguments. It will be won by whoever cares more. This issue will come down to whether or not pro-marriage voters can convince their legislators that voting to redefine marriage is not in their political best interest. If legislators believe their jobs will be at risk if they vote to redefine marriage, they won’t do it. It really is that simple.”
Please know that those who want to redefine marriage are already contacting state legislators. Will you please make your contacts today? 1-800-562-6000 will allow you to send a message to the governor, your state senator, and both your representatives. It will only take three minutes, and it is important that we counter those who will eventually destroy marriage if we don’t stand up and defend it NOW!
Please pray for God’s favor, for a calm witness, and for many on the opposite side to be won over to the Truth of God’s Word and the good news that Jesus Christ died for all of our sins.
There is a second issue about which you need to pray:
The right-to-conscience trial began in Tacoma last week.
Please pray for:
* Clarity, efficiency, wisdom, and stamina for the attorneys defending the right of conscience
* Protection for those attorneys, the plaintiffs (pharmacists and pharmacy owners) and their families
* That those attorneys and plaintiffs would be wise as serpents and innocent as doves
* That the Lord would confound the opposing side
* Favor with Judge Ron Leighton and that he will rule in favor of the plaintiffs
* For the Lord to reveal Himself and His truth to the other side in court; for their salvation, and that they will recognize that life, created in God’s image, is at stake here
* That the Lord would be glorified in the outcome
Background: In 2006, the governor of Washington, Planned Parenthood, NARAL, and Northwest Women’s Law Center (now Legal Voice) demanded that the Washington Board of Pharmacy (BOP) pass regulations forcing pharmacists and pharmacy owners to violate their conscience and dispense Plan B, the morning after pill (which has the potential to prevent implantation of an embryo, thus terminating life in its earliest form). Their demands were a part of a national agenda by pro-abortion groups to eliminate conscience rights protections for these health care professionals and to force private businesses to sell early abortifacients such as Plan B and ella.
Although the Board initially voted to pass a regulation supporting conscience rights, it abruptly reversed its position when the governor threatened the Board. In 2007, the Board passed the final regulations that require pharmacists and pharmacy owners to dispense drugs like Plan B and ella regardless of a pharmacist’s religious objection. They prohibit providers from referring patients to nearby providers when the providers have a conscientious objection, but in practice allow providers to refer patients for business and secular reasons.
After the Board’s ruling in 2007, two Christian pharmacists and a Christian pharmacy owner sued the Washington Board of Pharmacy for violating their constitutional right of conscience and free exercise of religion. After numerous delays, the trial for this lawsuit finally began Monday, November 28, at the Federal Courthouse in Tacoma, Washington, and will probably end December 22.
The outcome of this lawsuit will not only affect religious conscience rights of pharmacists, pharmacy owners and health care professionals, but has the potential to affect anyone in our state who chooses to exercise his/her constitutionally protected right of religious conscience.
Many of you have likely followed this situation and participated in some of the multiple public hearings, church petitions, letter-writing to the Board of Pharmacy, Gov. Gregoire, and newspapers, commented on sound offs and message boards, etc. Maybe you even wondered whatever became of the case, years after the initial assault began at the level of the BOP. Please, please pray for a good trial and outcome as requested above and also consider attending one or more days or half-days of the trial in order to give moral support and see how the system works. (It should be quite interesting if the prior Oral Arguments are any indication.) This might be a valuable experience for teens and perhaps older pre-teens, too.
Dates: Monday. – Thursday (November 28 – December 1)
Thursday – Friday (December 8 9)
Monday – Thursday (December 19 – 22)
The trial could theoretically take less than the allotted 10 days although that seems unlikely.
Time: 9:30 a.m. – Noon and 1:30 – 4:30 p.m.
You may need to arrive early to assure seating availability inside the courtroom, in addition to first allowing time to find parking and then pass through airport-style security.
Location: U.S. Federal Courthouse at 1717 Pacific Avenue in downtown Tacoma (old railway station building on north side of the street, a bit west of U-W Tacoma.) Using case name (Stormans vs. Selecky) or judge name (Hon. Ronald Leighton), you will be able to obtain room information from security upon your arrival.
Maureen Richardson, State Director
CWA of Washington