As the 2016 presidential elections rapidly approach, many pastors are asking, “what are my rights when it comes to addressing political issues?”
Many believe that political issues and the pulpit may never converge. In a four-minute video, Kelly Shackelford, First Liberty President and CEO, explains why this is simply not the case.
“There are a lot of misconceptions that pastors have about what their rights and freedoms really are,” Shackelford says, adding that many fear legal ramifications if they mention or participate in politics.
“That fear is not coming because of the law, it’s coming from other sources that would try to silence you,” Kelly continues.
According IRS regulations, there are only two things that pastors and churches, when classified as a 501(c)(3) organization, cannot do—two things we have never known pastors to want to do.
The number of things pastors can do during election season far outweigh the number of things they can’t do—in both quantity and importance.
Dear Coach Kennedy,
I would like to say thank you. Your dedication to your faith and your commitment to the positive education of our youth is truly admirable. I am deeply grateful for your military service and for taking a courageous stance in protecting religious liberty rights for teachers and administrators.
If our First Amendment protects a player’s right to kneel in protest, it certainly protects your right to kneel in prayer.
I was shocked to learn that Bremerton High School suspended you after denying your request to continue your wholesome practice of giving thanks after football games.
The Bremerton School District’s actions violate the law and send the wrong message to coaches, young people, our communities, and our nation — a message of hostility to religious freedom and intolerance toward personal religious expression.
Please know that you are not alone in this difficult time — I support you and First Liberty as you continue to fight for religious freedom! Our schools need more coaches like you, our country needs more citizens like you, and our world needs more people like you.✖