God

Preparing The Next Generation For The Culture Battle

Why am I here? What is the meaning of life? Can we prove the existence of God, or are we left to grapple in the dark and take blind leaps of faith about what we believe? Focus on the Family has produced a new DVD series called TrueU that presents scientific facts supporting a Christian worldview in order to equip Christian youth to defend their faith, especially when heading to college or into the workplace. In the first of the series, TrueU: Does God Exist?, Dr. Stephen Meyer plays a "philosophical survival" game pitting four worldviews against one another in the quest to decide which one gives the best answer.

Broken down into 10 30-minute lessons, TrueU is ideal for an older teenage Sunday School group, a home study group, or even as a curriculum for seniors in a Christian high school. From the creators of The Truth Project, TrueU builds a life-long foundation to prepare students to enter the world with a Biblical worldview and Christian values.

The Family Foundation is excited to be able to offer this series prior to release on Amazon.com or in bookstores at the special price of only $35.00. Don't miss this opportunity to equip the young people in your life with the knowledge and values they need to defend their faith from the onslaught they are sure to face as they enter college or the workplace.

Click here to see a TrueU preview video featuring Dr. Meyer.

To order your set, click here to log onto The Family Foundation’s donation page. When filling out the form, type "TrueU" at the bottom in the block that asks, "How did you find out about The Family Foundation." This will ensure your order in processed quickly and your DVDs will be sent in an expedited manner. Alternatively, you can send a check with True U in the memo line, made payable to The Family Foundation, to 830 East Main Street, Suite 1201, Richmond, VA 23219.

Thank You And Happy Thanksgiving

All of us at The Family Foundation of Virginia hope that you will spend time with your loved ones and friends this Thanksgiving. It’s a wonderful opportunity for us to reflect on the abundance of grace and mercy that is poured out on each of us each year by our loving God. In the many battles we face, and in a culture where our values seem to be slipping away, it is often difficult to find joy and thankfulness. Yet, we are incredibly blessed in so many ways. Simply being alive, having the opportunity to serve our God, to live in a land that is free — still — and having family and friends to love are just some of the things we too often take for granted.

This year, we at The Family Foundation have much for which to be thankful. While many will first think of the recent elections where pro-family candidates were victorious, our gratitude goes far beyond those results. For one, we can never express enough how thankful we are for our supporters. This year, despite the difficult economy, donors to The Family Foundation helped make Winning Matters an unquestioned success. Add to that the nearly 1,300 people who attended our Annual Gala with former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, and we can truly say that God supplied for our needs in remarkable ways in 2009.

We also are extremely thankful for our army of volunteers, both those who guide or work through our local grassroots networks, and those who help us here in the office or at various events. Incredibly, volunteers sacrificially gave more than 1,000 hours of their time in our headquarters this year! From stuffing envelopes for mailings, helping distribute nearly 900,000 Voter Guides, to making thousands of phone calls, the help given by these volunteers can simply not be measured. We could not have had a successful Winning Matters campaign, nor Gala, without these selfless individuals. The Family Foundation — Board and staff — offer our collective heartfelt thanks.

We also are thankful for the challenges God places in our path. It is only through those hard times that we truly place our trust in Him and mature in our faith. Together, we face many challenges — culturally and politically. But it is for just this time that God has placed us in this Commonwealth. He chose us to be here to fight for our liberties when they are in peril. That is an honor for which we can truly be thankful.

Again, we thank you for your support of The Family Foundation. May God bless you abundantly this Thanksgiving!

What An Honor!

In May, we noticed that none other than Right Wing Watch, the blog of the well known national liberal organization People For The American Way, had commented about us. In fact, it was concerned about the launch of our "Winning Matters" program, which engages pastors to lead their congregations into full participation into the public square. We noted at the time that we must be doing something right if such a large, national organization and RWW were keeping their eyes on us, a lil' ol' state policy organization. So, imagine how we feel now that they've mentioned us again (see here), this time ridiculing Bishop Harry Jackson, Jr., for speaking at some of our pastors events around the commonwealth. Wearing this online red badge of courage, we thought we'd report on something they really could chew on.

People For The American Way and other liberal, secular progressives believe, given recent election trends, that the death of Christianity in America is near — or at least we've been minimized to the point of a curious, but irrelevant, nuisance. It's apparent to the collective liberal institutional genius (media, academia, public education, special interest groups, unions, etc.), that many Americans finally are enlightened, no longer hold the traditional values that are the result of one's faith in God, and that the country has reached the Rubiconof a mother state with no looking back (the flipping of conservative Virginia their prize possession).

Those of us who still dare live in the Stone Age are so few in number that we can be essentially forgotten by society and left to dwell in our caves. Finally the progressives can officially progress . . .  

But maybe not. In Roanoke last week, we hosted a pastors event in connection with the Winning Matters 2009 Campaign. Approximately 40 pastors from around the region filled the room and were encouraged, equipped and empowered to continue influencing their congregations and communities on traditional values issues. (For information on other pastor events around Virginia, click here.)

Mat Staver, founder of Liberty Counsel and Dean of Liberty University's School of Law, reminded them of their personal and congregational rights to speak freely on the issues of the day. Rick Scarborough, of Vision America, challenged them to speak truth to their communities and leaders, as he has done for many years with great success. Family Foundation staff offered practical steps to make their churches more effective voices, including:

» Preaching a citizenship sermon; » Holding a voter registration drive; » Distributing General Assembly Report Cards; and » Distributing voter guides.

Each pastor there decided to stand up and be counted for the cause of Biblical values. They certainly didn't look dead in their passion to make a difference. Besides, even if they were, secular progressives forget that we serve a God who raises the dead. That alone, should give Right Wing Watch plenty to blog about.

Virginia Renewal Project's Pastors' Policy Briefing: Rediscover God In America, Encourage Your Pastor To Attend

The Family Foundation and Pastors For Family Values invite pastors from across the Commonwealth to the Virginia Renewal Project's upcoming Pastors' Policy Briefing, June 4 – 5, in Norfolk. This Rediscovering God in America briefing is vital for pastors throughout this nation. Fortunately, through VRP, we have an opportunity to make a start in that rediscovery here in Virginia. God has called men and women of faith to be shining lights in this dark world, but often we fail to shine because we lose our way, our purpose and our direction. We all play a role, and a small way you can help is to make sure your pastor attends this critical event as we continue our daily struggle to reclaim the foundation that has kept America strong for so many generations. 

The briefing has an incredible lineup of speakers (see below), meant to encourage pastors and their congregations to take a stand for morality in their daily lives — and hotel accommodations and all meals are complimentary to pastors.

Please make sure that your pastor is not left out of this important event. Forward this link to him or her, or print it and deliver it personally. 

__________________________________________________

The Family Foundation and Pastors For Family Values

and the

Virginia Renewal Project

Cordially invite you to participate in the

Virginia Renewal Project Pastors' Policy Briefing:

 Rediscovering God in America

With Special Guests

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich Rediscovering God in America

Historian David Barton WallBuilders Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee

The Honorable Bob McEwen

Lt. Col. Oliver North

and

Lou Engle Dr. Jerry Falwell, Jr. Dr. Mat Staver Dr. Laurence White as well as other guest speakers

Sheraton Norfolk Waterside 777 Waterside Drive , Norfolk, VA 23510 Thursday, June 4 – Friday, June 5

Meals and lodging are complimentary and will be provided by the Virginia Renewal Project.

To reserve your space, please RSVP no later than May 21, by calling (800) 992-5596 or visiting https://the.maxcelreg.net/VAbriefing.

Hotel information will be distributed the week of May 25 2009. Reservations are limited and will be accepted on a first call basis.

__________________________________________________

Today, more than ever, we need men and women who are willing to take a stand for the Biblical principles handed down to us by our forefathers. Please don't let this opportunity pass by your pastor — be sure your pastor is aware of this outstanding event.

To Our Vets, Belatedly

We're sorry for not posting a Veteran's Day tribute Monday. There's so much to say to thank these valiant men and women it is very difficult to adequately express the appropriate thoughts. Suffice it to say, we join with all Virginians and Americans to express our profound and deepest heartfelt thanks to all who have worn the uniform in service and dedication to the defence of our country. Just as there are so many words that could be used to express our gratitude to these selfless Americans, there also are numerous well produced video tributes. It was hard to pick only one, but we settled on the one below, an outstanding patriotic standard: The Armed Services Medley. We hope you enjoy it and for those veterans reading this, if you want to stand up while your service branch song is played, God Bless You. Know that we stand for you, always!

May God Bless Our Veterans And Their Heroic Comrades Who Made The Ultimate Sacrifice In Defence Of Our Country. May God Offer Comfort, Peace And Healing To All Veterans And Families Of All Those Who Have Served So Faithfully And Selflessly.

A Huge Follow-Up Question For Tonight

Yesterday, we posed six questions we'd love to hear asked during tonight's final presidential debate between Senators John McCain and Barack Obama. However, now that we have Democrat Congressman Steve Cohen teaching the Gospel from the House floor (whatever happened to the separation of church and state?) and calling Jesus a "community organizer" and Pontius Pilate a governor (see here), more than implying Obama is the "messiah" and Governor Sarah Palin (see video, slide show here) is a murderer; and now that America's most lovable and respected religious figure, Louis Farrakhan, has prophesied that Obama is the "messiah," (see here) this is what we hope to hear CBS News reporter, and tonight's moderator, Bob Schieffer, ask Senator Obama:

Is Representative Cohen right: Was Jesus a community organizer? If so, is Louis Farrakahn right — are you, in fact, the "messiah"?

After all, isn't time we hear from the man himself on this issue? A world anxiously waits to know if it is in the presence of the Second Coming.

God help us if Obama replies, "It is you who say I am."

"Pope" Pelosi

Nancy Pelosi leads a hard life. Look at all she has to do day-in, day-out: She's the first woman Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives. That's tough enough. But she's just published a book (that's sold a whopping 4,000 copies); she's trying to "save the world" — her actual quote; and reassure jittery convention delegates that her choice for president, Senator Barack Obama, really doesn't have lousy poll numbers (a negative Biden bounce per today's Gallup Poll, an unprecedented decline after naming a running mate and after the first night of a convention). After all, she believes Obama was chosen by God Himself to rescue the world — from America. Adding to that slug of theology, Speaker Pelosi has added the responsibilities of Pope to her gig. On Sunday's "Meet The Press" on NBC, she responded to a Tom Brokow question about when life begins by declaring 2,000 years of Church teaching wrong. Seriously. (See it here, on YouTube.) 

Okay, I'm not being straight up. The fact is, to be completely honest . . . she out-and-out lied!

Ms. Pelosi, who was raised Catholic, had the Everest-sized chutzpah to say the Catholic Church is not clear on its teaching of when life begins and that it has lacked clarity since its beginning. She implied that it even accepts cases of elective abortion. Then she said she had "researched" the issue for years and certain Church doctors (i.e., philosophers) had declared life begins three months after conception. Ms. Pelosi (contact here) considers herself a practicing Catholic. She needs to practice harder. As in Michael Phelps hard.

Rebukes were swift, sure and sharp. Chief among them, His Eminence, Edward Cardinal Egan, Archbishop of New York. Today he said, in part (click here to read in full):

Anyone who dares to defend that they (the unborn) may be legitimately killed because another human being "chooses" to do so or for any other equally ridiculous reason should not be providing leadership in a civilized democracy worthy of the name. (Emphasis added.)

Yesterday, His Eminence, Justin Cardinal Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, and Bishop William E. Lori of Bridgeport, Conn., who head the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Committees on Pro-Life Activities and Doctrines, respectively, issued a joint statement. It said, in part (click here to read in full):

In the course of a "Meet the Press" interview on abortion and other public issues on August 24, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi misrepresented the history and nature of the authentic teaching of the Catholic Church against abortion. 

In fact, the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches, "Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law." (No. 2271) (Emphasis added.)

The Archbishop of Washington, D.C., Donald Wurhl, issued a statement which reads in part (read it in full, here):

We respect the right of elected officials such as Speaker Pelosi to address matters of public policy that are before them, but the interpretation of Catholic faith has rightfully been entrusted to the Catholic bishops. Given this responsibility to teach, it is important to make this correction for the record.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church is clear: the current teaching of the Catholic Church on human life and abortion is the same teaching as it was 2,000 years ago. The Catechism reads: "Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception . . . Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law." (Catechism, 2270-2271)

The Catechism goes on to quote the Didache, a treatise that dates to the first century: "'You shall not kill the embryo by abortion and shall not cause the newborn to perish.'"

Never before has any Catholic politician, much less one in such high authority, been so heavily rebuked by so many Church authorities so quickly and universally, for such a blatant, purposeful misrepresentation of Church teaching. In the past, several bishops have said they would withhold Holy Communion from Catholic lawmakers who supported abortion on demand. However, those politicians never disputed Church teaching. Rather, they subjugated their proclaimed agreement with the Church to the perceived law of the land (i.e., "our hands are tied"). Pelosi has grossly surpassed this already grievous miscalculation by proclaiming her views equal to Church teaching.

In addition, the Archbishop of San Francisco, George Niederauer, of Pelosi's home diocese, published the USCCB statement on the archdiocese's Web site and will publish his personal response this Friday in the archdiocese's weekly, Catholic San Francisco. (Excellent reporting on all this is at American Papist.) So, Pelosi clearly has it coming from all corners, and justifiably so. Her comments, intended to minimize the authority of the Church and — worse — relegate it to nothing more than a subjective think tank with no more understanding of Church teaching than a hack who's done "some research" is appalling and ranks near blasphemy and sacrilege. 

Cardinal Egan said it best: She is not deserving of her position of leadership. Neither, we add, are any of those who agree with — or apologize for — her. If Speaker Pelosi firmly believes her secularized version of Catholicism is correct, she needs to start her own denomination. No one is stopping her. Then, she can wear a papal hat of her own and make any proclamation based on her "research" she wants.