Overcoming The World…
Dear CWA of Washington Member,
CWA of Washington spent a very productive day in Olympia last week! First, we co-sponsored the Citizen Activists Workshop, and then we delivered 298 homemade cookies to all 147 legislators plus the governor and attorney general’s offices with this note: MARRIAGE MATTERS TO CWA! In several offices, we engaged in conversations that were positive and encouraging even if we disagreed on the marriage controversy. Being ambassadors for our Lord is exciting, and we ask you to consider joining us in that role. Each of us has a gift to share with the world. Won’t you share yours through working with CWA?
Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God? 1 John 5:5
Marriage matters to CWA because it matters to God. Statistics show that married men and women live longer and better than singles do and a lot of the reason is the balance between male and female and the fact that God created man and woman to become one unit called family. No other combination fulfills that role, so we need to stand up for the Biblical definition of marriage, protect children and encourage men and women to renew their vows and stay married. Strengthening marriage is the answer, not diluting it by expanding the definition. The church, not government, is the vehicle to repair marriages. Encourage your pastor or priest to address marriage within the church and to engage in the battle to protect the Biblical definition of marriage. Please share CWA’s new brochure, Marriage Matters! Check it out on CWA’s national website: http://concernedwomen.org/images/content/MarriageMattersbrochureJan2012.pdf
Senate Bill (SB) 6239/House Bill (HB) 2516 relating to providing equal protection for all families in Washington by creating equality in civil marriage and changing the domestic partnership laws, while protecting religious freedom(Senate bill attached; House bill is a duplicate companion bill.)
CWA supports the Biblical definition of marriage between one man and one woman only. This definition is time-honored and consistent with American tradition, woven into the fabric of our culture and consistent with the tenets of every major religion. Washington already has granted all but the title marriage through domestic partnership legislation, so this bill is merely an attack on traditional values and will incrementally but inevitably lead to severe requirements being placed on religious institutions despite the bill’s stated attempt to protect such institutions. Although religious leaders appear to be protected from being forced or sued to perform same-sex marriages, their properties are not so protected if (Sec. 7.(1) and (2) ) “the organization offers admission, occupancy, or use of those accommodations or facilities to the public for a fee, or offers those advantages, privileges, services, or goods to the public for sale.” That means if ANY non-church group uses a church facility, that church cannot deny use to same-sex couples for a marriage ceremony. This is huge loop hole that will be attacked through the use of anti-discrimination and hate crime laws. It is simply a matter of time until those lawsuits begin and such litigation would bankrupt most churches.
The implications of the passage of these same-sex marriage bills are far reaching and numerous. Primary and immediate results will include the erosion of actual civil rights of freedom of speech and religion. This new law will embolden homosexuals to react more strongly toward any whom they perceive do not agree with their sexual choices and use the force of law against those of us who do not hate them, but do hold a Christian worldview that God loves us all just as we are but too much to leave us as He finds us.
Other questions to consider: Why is same-sex marriage so vital in a year when the state is faced with a huge budget crisis? Why should a tiny minority of citizens (1-3 percent) be allowed to redefine marriage for the rest of us? Do you realize that since the domestic partnership legislation passed in 2009, only one quarter of one percent of Washington citizens have taken advantage of this opportunity? What is the crisis for homosexual couples in 2012?
The hearing for the Senate’s bill (SB 6239) is scheduled for next Monday, 1/23/12, 10 a.m.-12:00 p.m. in the John A. Cherberg Bldg, Senate Hearing Room 2, in the Government Operations, Tribal Relations & Elections Committee. The House bill has no definite hearing scheduled as of this writing but Monday afternoon is a possibility.
Please plan to attend and bring others with you to this hearing in Olympia. Plan to arrive early to be able to sign in opposing the bill or to get on the list to testify against same-sex marriage. If you plan to testify, bring twenty copies of your testimony to give to the committee members (Senate: seven; House: thirteen). Whether or not you testify, it is important to submit written testimony. After the hearings, we urge you to visit all three of your legislators. It is best to make an appointment, but be sure to at least drop by their offices.
I cannot over-emphasize the importance of you contacting your three state legislators NOW toll-free legislative hotline 1-800-562-6000. However, it is also very important to call your own district representatives at their offices. You will find that information on the Washington Legislature website www.leg.wa.gov/legislature. This website is the portal of all that’s going on at the legislature and provides you with bill information, committee agendas and public hearing schedules and contact information for legislators and state agencies.
1/23/12 SAME-SEX MARRIAGE BILL HEARING: I need some CWA members to help me the day of the hearing. If you plan to attend the hearing, please volunteer; call 425-869-1923 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
CITIZEN ACTIVIST WORKSHOPS: CWA co-sponsors these educational workshops, scheduled for January 24, February 6 and February 20, from 9:00 10:00 a.m. plus a field trip to attend committee hearings. Sign up to receive confirmation and location: email@example.com or 425-869-1923 OR firstname.lastname@example.org or 253-208-3523.
PLEASE BE IN PRAYER ABOUT MARRIAGE IN OUR STATE! This is not about simply being nice or fair to homosexuals. Clearly as Christians, we are called to be respectful and kind toward all other individuals in order to be good witnesses. This is about our basic religious liberty to believe according to sincerely held values, not being forced to accept, promote nor participate in any lifestyle that is contrary to our faith. I have attached two articles for your education. Please read them and share them with others.
In His Service,
CWA of Washington