Who: Tony Perkins (Family Research Council), Alan Chambers (Exodus), Pastor Pendleton (Tremont Temple Baptist Church), David Parker, Robert Wirthlin, Kris Mineau (Massachusetts Family Institute), Bishop Harry Jackson (Hope Christian Church).
What: Press conference concerning Liberty Sunday Simulcast
When: 3:00 pm EDT, October 15, 2006
Disclaimer: The following is simply notes and paraphrasing I (Randy) wrote down during the press conference. Direct quotes are properly noted within the text. Everything else is paraphrased and spring from my understanding of what the presenters said.
First up Tony Perkins with the Family Research Council. Tony shares that he was very excited about tonight's simulcast. the reason they chose Boston is because same sex marriage started in this state and what we see in its wake is the loss of religious freedom. As they have condoned same sex marriage, the state condemns Christian expression in the public square. He said that this press conference and the simulcast won't be just about organizational spokespersons. The message will be brought by the people who have been detrimentally affected by the decision of four judges in Massachusetts. A decision that is setting a dangerous precedent and conflict around the country.
Dr. Ray Pendleton Pastor at Tremont Temple Baptist Church stated, "We think it is important to uphold what is best for the culture and the country. We want to speak what is truth, in love."
Kris Mineau, heads up Massachusetts Family Institute said something to the effect of tonight's events will help emphasize the point for the Mass legislature should finally allow the people of Massachusetts to speak for themselves instead of unelected judges ignoring the will of the people and speaking for them.
David Parker was up next. His son, when in kindergarten was given a diversity book-bag that indoctrinates children with beliefs about homosexuality that are contrary to the beliefs of the parents and the welfare of these five year olds. The rights of parents are being trampled for the rights of a rampant gay agenda.
David Parker quotes Robert Scutch, the author of pro-gay children's book, "Who's a Family?" put in the "diversity book-bag": Scutch states, "I wrote the book for children before they know that there is any other way."
David Parker continues, that the gay agenda is being promoted non-stop in many ways; Day of Silence, Coming Out Day, High School students going to lower grades to talk about coming out and resources being made available to grade school and beyond. Mr. Parker simply wants parents to be notified and given their right to opt out. The Lexington school system will not notify parents. Mr. Parker's conclusion is that where Religious liberty is compromised all liberties are compromised. Parents need to take a stand for children around the country. The ACLU is trampling on religious freedom and parents by helping the school system against the parents.
Rob Wirthlin is the father of a seven year old who, without Mr. Wirthlin's knowledge or consent, was read a book by his second grade teacher called King and King which is about romantic love between two princes who eventually marry. The Wirthlin's asked the teacher for a meeting but the night before that meeting, the principal called and intimated that the Wirthlin's had ulterior motives and she was gong to be there whether they wanted her to be there or not. The Principal said that the Teacher said she chose the book specifically because she felt it was something that the little boys could relate too. Mr. Wirthlin says, "I am standing for parents rights. Parents should be the ones who decide when where and how to approach these subjects with their very own children."
Tony Perkins announces Freedom Watch. As long as liberty is in danger... FRC will keep watch and fight for liberty.
Alan Chambers was next. Tony said that Alan was, "the most controversial speaker." He said Exodus takes a message of hope across the country. There is a message of hope for the homosexual who wants to find freedom from homosexuality. Tony said, "Those who are the trumpeters of tolerance have little tolerance for Alan's message." Alan shared about how religious liberty is in danger as evidenced by the huge protest at last year's Love Won Out Conference at Tremont Temple Baptist church. Close to two thousand people screamed, among other things, "Shut down Focus On The Family!" "Shut down Dr. Dobson!" "Shut down ex-gays!" "Shut down Tremont Temple!" no call for tolerance, just a desire to impose silence against those that disagree with the gay activists. While it is important to fight for the preservation of religious liberties and important social issues, we must also have grace and compassion. We must provide hope and help for those seeking freedom from homosexuality.
Tony Perkins says that the opponents say that religious conservatives use gay issues as wedge issues but Tony calls them a bridge issue. There is no other issue (gay agenda) that has brought modern Christians together so well. One of the side benefits of this unnecessary battle is an increasingly colorblind church.
Bishop Harry Jackson is the senior pastor of Hope Christian Church. He gave a stirring history of black community struggling and leading the way to liberty. He states that the black pulpit in America has actually been the engine for the black community. Black Pastors deserve to be heard and to have their voices count. In the mid-term election you are going to see a growing union in the church and that is going to change the tide and turn back the gay agenda. More than ever before you are going to see Values Voters show up and make a difference in America.
Afterward, the media questions were basic fact finding and not much else to report except one incident that deserves it's very own post.
Before closing this post however, I wanted to say that all the presenters were very calm, humble and eloquent. My notes do not do them justice. I also met Mr. Parker and Mr. Wirthlin after the press conference and I have to tell you, they are two very protective, humble and loving Dad's. They were not activists before the Lexington School Board decided to usurp their parental rights but now that this school board has forced the fight... they will do whatever it takes to protect their children. I genuinely enjoyed meeting these two men.
Also at the press conference, I met John Schroeder with Blogotional and Joe Carter with Evangelical Outpost. These guys are serious bloggers and you really should check out their blogs on a regular basis. I truly enjoyed meeting them and discussing Christians, politics and blogging! They were a lot of fun to meet.