A Critical Week to Pray for Nation-Shaping Events at the Supreme Court
- By Alan Sears
- Posted Mar 21, 2014
- No Comments »
I wrote to you a few months ago that this day was coming. We’re anticipating a series of critical hearings and rulings from the U.S. Supreme Court on several important Alliance Defending Freedom cases. The court’s decisions in these cases will have profound implications for you and your family’s life and religious freedom – indeed, for what it means to be a Christian in America.
I am particularly asking you to pray specifically for these cases today and in the weeks ahead:
- Town of Greece v. Galloway – The court heard arguments in this case on November 6, and a decision is expected any day. Your attorneys are defending local officials in Greece, New York, against charges that they have violated the Constitution by observing a 300-year-old American tradition – allowing volunteers from the community to pray aloud before town council meetings. The court’s ruling in this case could potentially impact public expressions of faith in everything from the Pledge of Allegiance to “In God We Trust” on our nation’s currency.
- McCullen v. Coakley – The court heard oral arguments on January 15 in this case, funded by your ministry, which involves the constitutionality of a 35-foot “buffer zone” enacted to keep pro-life activists and counselors from approaching abortion clinics (and their customers). A decision is expected any time now.
- Conestoga Wood Specialties v. Sebelius – On Tuesday, March 25, the court will hear oral arguments on behalf of the Hahns, a practicing Mennonite family whose company manufactures custom wood cabinets. The Hahns, represented by your ministry’s staff and allied attorneys, are challenging the Obama administration’s abortion pill mandate, which compels all employers, regardless of their religious convictions, to suppress their conscience and provide coverage for abortion-inducing drugs – or face heavy financial penalties.
The Hahns’ case will be presented simultaneously with Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby, addressing the same issues of human dignity and freedom.
- Reed v. Town of Gilbert – We expect word the last week of March on if and when the court will hear oral arguments in this case, in which your ministry’s attorneys are defending a small Arizona church being fined regularly by city officials for using temporary signs to advertise its worship services. (The city is not fining other political and ideological groups for using the same type of signs.)
- Elane Photography, LLC v. Willock – We also expect word the last week of March on whether the court will hear this especially crucial case, in which we are defending a New Mexico artist penalized for “sexual orientation” discrimination because she gracefully declined to use her talents as a photographer to commemorate a same-sex “commitment ceremony. At stake is her right – and yours – to follow the demands of conscience and faith.
There’s no way for me to overstate how important each of these cases are, and how much depends on the Lord’s working in the hearts of these nine justices. Your prayers and support have been so crucial in bringing these cases this far. Please continue to pray fervently for the clients, our allies, and our attorneys, and that God will move clearly, powerfully to affirm and protect human dignity and religious freedom in America.
Author: Alan Sears