Welcome to Religious Liberty
“Each ministry will soon be threatened. Let us work and work together while it is day.” ~~ Clarence E. Hodges
The Director of the South Central Conference Religious Liberty Department provides religious liberty leadership for the South Central Conference administration, coordination and cooperation with the Southern Union Conference on issues of religious liberty and last-day events, professional assistance to the North American Division relating to the promotion of Liberty magazine, religious liberty education, special events, and policy development when requested. This may include but is not limited to serving on committees, public speaking, sermons, Radio and TV appearances, and contacts with elected officials and human rights organizations. For local churches, these duties include training and informing local church religious liberty leaders and committees, sermons, seminars, and participation in special events as requested. Assistance is also available to local pastors and evangelists to help educate prospective members on issues of religious liberty, especially problems in the workplace and procedures for securing Sabbath accommodations.
The local church religious liberty leader serves as a promoter, communication link, and contact with the conference for religious liberty issues. It is important to maintain contacts with the SCC director to share information regarding local problems encountered by local churches or individual members of local churches. Efforts should be initiated to develop a network of individuals to keep informed on issues and actions at the local level regarding religious liberty. This network should include local thought leaders such as civic leaders, civil rights leaders, and local and state elected officials. While the church must be protected from efforts to unite church and state or mix religion and politics, it is essential to have a positive witness with community leaders and to appropriately support the efforts of others who serve humanity.
The responsibilities of the religious liberty leader may include the following:
- To promote the circulation of Liberty: a magazine of religious freedom” and other religious liberty-related literature.
- To advise church members concerning matters affecting religious liberty in the local area.
- To organize and stimulate religious liberty meetings and programs as circumstances require.
- To work with the pastor in aiding individuals who are experiencing problems involving religious liberty.
The religious liberty leader usually serves on the Church Personal Ministries committee and on the Church board.
Ways to Promote Religious Liberty
Here are some ideas for promoting religious liberty in your community:
- Plan a special Sabbath for religious liberty awareness at least once a year helping all to understand that when religious liberty is gone, our church ministries will follow.
- Arrange religious liberty seminars or panel discussions with local leaders or other invited guests to inform the community and the church membership.
- Arrange for religious liberty radio interviews or announcements to be aired on a local radio station.
- Send Liberty magazine to area pastors, judges, and attorneys. Also buy a subscription for your local library.
NAD Religious Liberty Department
Office of Legislative Affairs
North American Religious Liberty Association
Seventh-day Adventist Church State Council
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