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National Sovereignty

This Memorial Day: We Remember

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By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us.
And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.
— 1 John 3:16

 

All gave some… Some gave all. Join CWA as we remember those who have died defending our country and our freedoms. Let us pause to remember: With blood was our freedom bought, and with blood it is kept. Heroes one and all. May we never forget.

We hope that you will join us in commemorating Memorial Day by doing something special this year to honor those who have died defending our country, whether it be paying your respects at a veteran’s cemetery, taking your children to a Memorial Day parade, or simply putting the American flag up outside your house. (Here are guidelines on how to correctly display the flag.)

Don’t forget to thank all of the men and women we currently have serving in the Armed Forces. We’ve included two graphics below for you to share on Facebook to show your gratitude.

May God bless our troops and may God bless America.

The History of Memorial Day

By the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs

Three years after the Civil War ended, on May 5, 1868, the head of an organization of Union veterans — the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) — established Decoration Day as a time for the nation to decorate the graves of the war dead with flowers. Maj. Gen. John A. Logan declared that Decoration Day should be observed on May 30. It is believed that date was chosen because flowers would be in bloom all over the country.

The first large observance was held that year at Arlington National Cemetery, across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C.

The ceremonies centered around the mourning-draped veranda of the Arlington mansion, once the home of Gen. Robert E. Lee. Various Washington officials, including Gen. and Mrs. Ulysses S. Grant, presided over the ceremonies. After speeches, children from the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Orphan Home and members of the GAR made their way through the cemetery, strewing flowers on both Union and Confederate graves, reciting prayers and singing hymns.

Did You Know?

On December 28, 2000, President Bill Clinton signed S. 3181, the National Moment of Remembrance Act, into law that declared 3 p.m. local time on Memorial Day of every year as the National Moment of Remembrance “in honor of the men and women of the United States who died in the pursuit of freedom and peace.”

In President Clinton’s speech after signing the National Moment of Remembrance Act, he said, “This Act recognizes in law a commemoration begun on Memorial Day in May 1997, when “Taps” was played at 3:00 p.m. on many radio and television stations across the Nation as Americans paused to remember the men and women who have lost their lives in service to our country. This past May, both a Congressional Resolution and a Presidential Proclamation called for the observance of a National Moment of Remembrance. It is my hope that the establishment of the National Moment of Remembrance in law, along with the creation of the White House Commission, will promote greater understanding of the meaning of the Memorial Day holiday for all Americans.”

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Memorial Day: Were it Not for America

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This morning I attended the small town funeral of a World War II veteran.  He served in the Air Force B-24 Bomber Squadron, 8th Air Force, England.  Watching the presentation of the flag to his widow, a British war bride (they were married 66 years), I was deeply touched once again by what these brave Americans did way back then.  Hearing Taps being bravely played by his 15-year-old granddaughter, a local high school freshman, put it over the top for me.  It was honor of a higher level as she nailed it and then collapsed in tears as the last tone from her trumpet hung in the air.  I happened to be standing near her and took her into my arms and held her sobbing frame while telling her that were it not for men like her grandfather, I might have grown up speaking German.  She looked at me and smiled through her tears.  I hope she understood what I was trying to tell her.  Indeed a moment to preserve.

Often, when I have the blessed opportunity to speak at gatherings here in this great country, I ask if there are veterans, but especially WWII veterans present.  Why?  Because I want them to know that I remember.  I grew up in Norway raised by parents who lived through five years of horror during the Nazi occupation.  And though I was born what seems to be an eternity away from that horrible era, it was only 17 short years that seemed like a blink of an eye to those who lived through it all.  The small town I was born in was the home of the factory that produced Heavy Water, a vital component sought after in the race for the atom bomb.  So, needless to say, the presence of the Gestapo as well as the Norwegian Resistance movement was large and intense.  (If you are interested, Heroes of Telemark, the 1963 movie featuring Kirk Douglas, is based on the true story.)  My grandfather was in the Resistance and hid in the mountains for months on end, while the Gestapo took his sons hostage and put them in labor camps in order to flush him out from hiding.  He could not come out as he knew the price for surrender was too high, even higher than that of his children’s well-being and even their lives.  At the recent funeral of my mother, one of my uncles stood up and talked about it all for the first time that I can remember, and I was stunned at some of the information that came to light, the price they all paid, yet the determination to fight for freedom at all costs.  It was something my parents drilled into our heads, almost daily, while growing up.  Stories of my dad smuggling horse meat home to cook, cut and stolen from a Nazi commander’s portion, and tales of my mom’s encounters with the Allied bombs that rained over the friendly little town – bombs aimed at saving the world, not to kill; however, kill they did.  Now, so many years later, I am ever grateful for the upbringing and heritage of a family devoted to liberty and freedom, to honor and sacrifice, and I often wonder about the providence of being born into such a family and where it takes one along the path of life.

So, today, at the funeral, I was overwhelmed by the honor shown this precious man and his family.  After all, how can you not be when standing in the bitter cold North Dakota wind, the soldiers with great precision folding  Old Glory and passing  on not only his memory but to remind the grandchildren and great- grandchildren of the exceptionalism of the American soldier and what is required of him/her in the quest for liberty.  Granted, this man came home, farmed and raised a large family, but many returned in a casket, and even more bodies never did return to the soil of their birth.  We must never ever take their service for granted, nor stop passing on the stories of history to our children, no matter how far removed it may seem.  Humanity has a way of repeating history, for good and for bad.  It is up to us to make sure it is for the better for the coming generations.

We need leadership from the local to the state to national level that understands the blessing that is America, the fundamental beauty of the charters set forth by the Founding Fathers in the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights and the Constitution, and the duty that comes with it.

I believe leadership that understands America and her charters and blessings cannot but exude patriotism as they share their passion in the public square.  I cannot say what the future holds for any of us and much less who will reside in the White House come January 2013, and out of honor for this family on this day, I will not be as political as I would generally be in regards to the 2012 presidential race.  However, suffice to say that we need, and I sincerely hunger for, patriotic, proud leadership in this great nation.  Several years back, I swore an oath to America becoming a citizen of this great country.  And while doing so, having pride in the fact that my roots and upbringing come from a nation who has stood with America through over a century of partnership for freedom and liberty.  Sure, there are differences, but the core belief in liberty is deep in both nations and the willingness to sacrifice similar throughout history.  The words of my late father urge us to always “stand up for what you believe in, never be silent, and fight for those who cannot fight for themselves”, and my late and non-political mom’s advice after September 11 was, “never trust any bad guy, do not let anyone give you a Chamberlain message of peace in our time as long as bad guys are out there; tell your American President to always get the bad guy before he gets you.” Their advice rings loud and true in my soul.  Being an American comes with great responsibility, and that oath I took meant something to me.  Combine that with the heritage with which God has blessed me, and I will not stay silent, nor will I apologize for what I believe, that God did shed His grace on thee, America.  Hope comes from Providence.  That is nothing for which to apologize!  And we will not apologize for it, not now and not in the future.   This belief in America is nothing for which to apologize!

Although I fear for America and the world today, (we have leadership on many levels that cannot see clearly that America is truly exceptional) we are a nation that has always lent itself to fight for the cause of liberty across the world regardless of cost.  I have great hope that we can see America renewed, revived, and restored to the values that made her great.  We must find and elect leaders who will insure that a future of freedom and prosperity will be provided this precious 15-year-old granddaughter who, by sounding the trumpet today, gave the honor so well deserved for her grandfather’s service.  I, for one, was reminded once again today that were it not for America and its staunch allies, my path of life would indeed have been different and may not have included freedom.

Editor’s Note: We bring you this blog post as part of our Memorial Day remembrance of all those who faithfully served our country.  It was written by guest blogger Janne Myrdal, who at the time of writing served as state director for Concerned Women for America of North Dakota. It was originally posted April 19, 2011. To read more on Memorial Day, click here.

Our One Motivation

By | Blog, Defense of Family, Education, National Sovereignty, News and Events, Religious Liberty, Sanctity of Life, Sexual Exploitation, Support for Israel | No Comments

As women who are concerned for America, why do we do what we do? Why support lobbying efforts, write letters to Congress, make phone calls to the White House, and give our money to support these endeavors?  And why do we pray? It’s because we know the one true God.

We support human life from conception, because we know that every child is “fearfully and wonderfully made” (Psalms 139).

We reject gender fluidity, because we know “God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” (Genesis 1:27).

We work against sexual exploitation and homosexual “marriage,” because we know that marriage is God’s good design, a mystery that points beautifully to Christ and His church (Ephesians 5:32).

We oppose overbearing government control of education, because God instructs parents to teach their children diligently (Deuteronomy 6:7) and bring them up in the instruction of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4).

We advocate for religious liberty, because we know that, ultimately, the truth will win out and will set people free (John 8:32).

God created the universe. He put every star in its place. He designed the Earth and sculpted the mountains. He established the seas and fashioned a diversity of animals. He formed man out of the dust of the Earth and breathed life into him. Trying to live without acknowledging our Creator is like covering our eyes and ears and stumbling about in the dark. Knowing God brings us into the light. His word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path (Ps. 119:105).

Knowing the God who brings meaning to life motivates us to continue to lobby, write letters, make phone calls, give money, and pray! We must persevere to glorify Him. And we must persevere in knowing Him through His Word.

Keri Folmar was press secretary for Concerned Women for America in the 90’s and now lives in the Middle East where her husband, John, is the pastor of the United Christian Church of Dubai. She has recently written The Good Portion: The Doctrine of Scripture for Every Woman and has published several Bible studies for women.

From Judge to Justice: Gorsuch Confirmed with Bipartisan Support

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Washington, D.C. –Today, Judge Gorsuch, soon-to-be Justice Gorsuch, was confirmed 54-45 to be the next Associate Supreme Court Justice of the United States with bi-partisan support.

Penny Nance, CEO and President of Concerned Women for America, had this to say:

“Today we witnessed a historic victory for our country. One that proves government ‘for the People, by the People’ is alive and well. The Senate overcame historic partisan obstructionism and restored original Senate precedent.

“On behalf of our members, I want to thank Leader McConnell, as well as Sen. Grassley, for their decisive leadership, which gave the American people a voice in November on the kind of justice they believed should fill the Supreme Court vacancy.

“I also want to thank President Trump for keeping his promise to nominate a constitutionalist judge to the Supreme Court. It is hard to imagine someone better suited to serve on our nation’s highest court than Judge Gorsuch.

“Judge Gorsuch follows the law wherever it leads, regardless of personal opinion or political preference. His constitutional jurisprudence makes him an ardent defender of the rights that keep us free.

“Judge Gorsuch will elevate the proper role of the judiciary and refuse to legislate from the bench. He is what America needs in this time of partisan dysfunction and obstructionism from the far left-the bipartisan support for his confirmation is proof.

“I would be remiss not to thank the Democrats who had the conviction to listen to their constituents rather than toeing the party line. I applaud their willingness to rise above the political fray in favor of their constituents.

“In spite of partisan gridlock, we see the symphony of the three branches of government and their checks and balances function as our Founders intended.”Our prayers continue to be with Judge, soon-to-be Justice, Gorsuch and his family as they begin this new chapter.”

For an interview with Penny Nance contact Janae Stracke at [email protected] or 712-269-1724.

Concerned Women Through History: National Sovereignty — Deborah, Joan of Arc, and Bev Ehlen

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There is a deep valor in standing up for one’s own nation.  Believing in a nation’s sovereignty literally means believing in the state’s right to “self-govern.”  It is the patriotism that protects one’s own nation against those who seek to oppress or destroy it.

We could, at first, think national sovereignty has more to do with men.  Men are often in governing positions; men are often the ones on the battlefield. We are told by the left that women care mostly about “women’s issues” like reproductive “freedom.”  But this worldview misses a long legacy of women who are deeply involved in their country’s governing and protection.

Deborah, the Bible’s only female judge, was so important to Israel’s history that she was known as the “Mother of Israel.” She was a judge in the land, an amazing civic responsibility, but she became concerned that the Israelite people had been so long enslaved by the king of Canaan and his army commander Sisera. Deborah knew God was calling Israel’s army, led by Barak, to come against Sisera.  She was brave enough to demand that Barak follow God’s call and brave enough to accompany him.  Yet she was humble enough to not be the head of the army herself, and to share in the victory with another woman — Jael — who slew Sisera with her tent peg!  It’s a remarkable story (read more in Judges 4 & 5) about protecting one’s nation.

Then there is Joan of Arc whose love for France led her to a battle of her own.  Born a poor shepherd girl, she felt directly called by God to defend France from English oppression.  In chapter one of his book, 7 Women, Eric Metaxas tells of the situation France faced: “It was not unusual for English soldiers to march into French villages, killing civilians, burning homes, and stealing crops and cattle.” This situation called Joan out of her comfort zone and into great acts of bravery: “Although I would rather have remained spinning at my mother’s side,” she said, “yet must I go and must I do this thing, for my Lord wills that I do so.” Her sacrifices eventually led to victory and the restoration of the King of France before her own capture and trial.  Her ultimate martyrdom speaks highly of her commitment to God and country at all costs.

Whilst Deborah was “Mother of Israel,” Joan was “The Maid of Orleans.”  Whether married or single, whether judging the laws or leading the troops, whether Israel or France, Deborah and Joan protected national sovereignty. They are an inspiration for concerned women who wish to protect America today.

In today’s world, women like Bev Ehlen protect America by educating our leaders, so that the loyalty of those leaders to America can grow against any internal or external threat.

Bev is standing up for America by working on the ground to educate individuals across Missouri regarding the Christian history and foundation of our country. Because of Bev’s work, each member of the Missouri General Assembly (MOGA) is given a copy of The Five Thousand Year Leap when they take office, which explains the twenty eight principles that the Founders used to create our republic and write our U.S. Constitution.  Bev believes that protecting America requires renewed commitment to these principles and to the governing structure of federalism where each sovereign state makes up a wonderful sovereign nation.

In what way might God be calling you to protect America today?

 

NDAA Female Draft Provision Removed

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CWALAC_MediaStatementWashington, D.C. – As of Tuesday evening, the final conference report for the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) has dropped the provision forcing women to register for the draft. Instead, there will be a study reviewing the Selective Service. Penny Nance, CEO and President of Concerned Women for America, had this to say:

“Concerned Women for America recognized the significance and consequences of this drastic change in longstanding military policy. We immediately activated our grassroots and built a coalition to protect America’s daughters and ensure military readiness. I am grateful the NDAA conferees put America’s national security above the push for social engineering.

“In the age of political correctness, it is refreshing to see our nation’s leaders prioritize the interests of Americans, instead of caving to political pressure. Our members were instrumental in this victory. Their efforts to educate their senators and members of Congress highlighted the concerns of people across the country.

“I want to personally applaud Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) and Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Nebraska) for their leadership and moral courage to stand up to political correctness for the sake of our safety.

“I also want to thank the organizations and members who partnered with us in this significant victory.”

President-elect Trump on the Right Track with Sen. Sessions for Attorney General

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CWALAC_MediaStatementWashington, D.C. – Penny Nance, CEO & President of Concerned Women for America (CWA), the nation’s largest public policy women’s organization, made the following comments on the news that President-elect Donald J. Trump has selected Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions (R) to serve as the 84th U.S. Attorney General:

Sen. Sessions has been a champion for the conservative principles that are the foundation of liberty and freedom.  Both his academic preparation and his stellar career as a U.S. Attorney and as a senator testify of an honest, competent man with a heart towards serving his fellow countrymen, even through much personal sacrifice.

We commend President-elect Trump for his selection of such a strong candidate.  The choice speaks very highly of his commitment to conservative principles.

The hundreds of thousands of members of Concerned Women for America (CWA) around the country will urge senators to move quickly in the new year to confirm Sen. Sessions as the next attorney general, so that we may start rectifying many of the asphyxiating policies pursued by Attorney General Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch.

The attacks on religious freedom and freedom of conscience in general, for example, must be at the top of the list.

For an interview with Penny Nance contact Janae Stracke at [email protected] or 712-269-1724.

CWA Response to Thursday’s RNC Speeches

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CWALAC_MediaStatementCleveland, OH -Thursday, July 21, Penny Nance CEO and President of Concerned Women for America said:

“Donald Trump made further gains with American voters by powerfully challenging the narrative that America’s best years are behind us.  He presented an inspirational vision for Americans on key issues including national security, crime, taxes, the economy and education. His reaffirmation of his promise to only appoint constitutionalists to the courts and to support Israel will resonate again with Evangelical Christians.  I believe that as Americans begin to pay closer attention to this race, Donald Trump will continue to attract new voters to the Republican party.

“Perhaps the Trump campaign had new voters in mind with two speakers in particular.  In Peter Thiel’s (PayPal Co-Founder and Venture Capitalist), address he brought up the recent controversy surrounding transgender bathroom usage in his speech. He said, ‘Now we are told that the greatest debate is about who gets to use which bathroom. This is a distraction from our real problems. Who cares?’ Concerned Women for America respectfully disagrees. Though our country faces many issues, it does not diminish the importance of other issues such as protecting the safety and privacy of women and children.

“While trying to make one minority group comfortable, open bathroom and shower policies ignore the feelings of women who have been abused or who have cultural and religious modesty concerns which make them uncomfortable with men in their bathroom or showers. Concerned Women for America cares about this policy because it creates an enormous opportunity for abuse, as other men may use it to gain access to the vulnerable. There are currently about 850,000 sexual predators on the national registry who will use any pretext to access innocent women and children.

“The Obama Administration began this conversation by working to coerce states and schools into abandoning common sense. Mr. Thiel shares some of our conservative principles, and we are happy to work with like-minded people in the areas where we can agree and specifically for his safety from Islamic fascist.  But we must respectfully disagree with his statements tonight. We take comfort in knowing that there are better solutions which consider everyone’s needs.

“In addition, despite Donald Trump’s clear promise to clean up America’s 19 trillion dollars in debt, Ivanka Trump’s speech may have hinted at new government entitlements.  She suggested in her speech that her father, Donald Trump, as President would work towards equal pay and affordable child care. She is correct in her assessment that motherhood is the dividing line in the pay gap.  For single mothers, this is particularly difficult.  We look forward to market-based approaches to this issue instead of more warmed over, bureaucratic solutions.   Seventy percent of parents with children five and under say that one parent at home is the best child care arrangement during a child’s earliest years. When parents were asked to rank nine childcare options for pre-school children, they ranked government-run childcare centers dead last. Mothers often prefer home care by a relative, even when other childcare is convenient. Rather than imposing more government, lets lower the tax burden on families as a means to achieve the affordable childcare of their choice.”

 

*For more information and statistics please see CWA’s A War No More: The Truth Behind the “War on Women” booklet here.