At the end of last year, you may have seen our report of how the city of Lincolnton, NC, attempted to coerce two pastors into silence from preaching publicly.
The city passed (and illegitimately enforced) two ordinances that violate both the North Carolina Constitution and the U.S. Constitution—specifically our First Amendment rights to free speech and religion:
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Lincolnton officials specifically (and unlawfully) targeted the peaceful, protected activities of Pastors Jeffrey and Jeremy Shook as they preached the Gospel outside a local festival. The Founding Fathers valued (and specifically guarded) the rights of citizens like these faithful preachers.
However, city police issued “City Ordinance Ticket[s],” and city offices denied any recourse to contest the illegitimately issued tickets. Less than a month later, Lincolnton police illegitimately arrested Pastor Jeffrey for “willfully making any loud, raucous, or disturbing sound” when the brothers again peaceably preached the Gospel.
In defense of America’s rich tradition of open-air preaching, the National Center for Life and Liberty filed a complaint in federal court against the city and the specific participants. The city took no responsibility for its clear and egregious wrongdoing and repeatedly denied “each and every allegation.”
Please pray for justice for these faithful preachers and all the citizens of Lincolnton who are vulnerable to religious discrimination. Thank you for your financial support of this and other efforts to defend liberty and life for this and every generation.
Together we can educate government officials. With God’s help we will dissuade them from abusing their power and discriminating against the Christians they were elected and appointed to serve.
Maximum Ministry. Minimum Liability.
- Pray: In today’s increasingly difficult cultural climate, churches and ministries face greater and more frequent legal, physical, and financial threats. In light of their heightened vulnerability, the NCLL conducts legal seminars across the country, teaching, encouraging, and equipping leaders to protect their churches and ministries.
Please pray the leaders who need this training will attend—and protect their flocks effectively. Please pray specifically for protection from last-minute distractions that would otherwise derail their attendance.
- Pray: As both private sector and government workplaces demonstrate greater hostility toward the Gospel, Florida officials discriminated against and demoted Captain Kevin Fiedor, veteran law enforcement officer, for his faith and positive moral conduct.
As Capt. Fiedor’s case moves forward in federal court, please pray his constitutional and civil rights to share his personal faith with others in the workplace will be affirmed. Please also pray that Kevin and his family will be made whole from this injustice on them.
- Praise: Leaders created several new nonprofit ministries in 2018. As they finalized their nonprofit statuses, they finished the year strong! Please praise the Lord for the specific mission He has given each ministry and their ability to spread the Gospel.
- Praise: A church was falsely accused, but God blessed the NCLL to ensure the truth was heard. Please thank the Lord that truth prevailed, the matter was resolved, and now the church can minister to their community without the burden of this falsehood.
- Pray: A church in NC suffered significant property damage from a collapsing sewer system. Please pray the city and insurance companies finalize a favorable arrangement to fully rebuild the church’s facilities.
- Pray: As one church sells its property and merges with another church, please ask for God’s help for all involved in the transition (including the NCLL). May He grant grace for the process to unfold smoothly in terms of legal and operational considerations—and for the combined church to move forward in unity.
- Pray: As noted above, the city of Lincolnton, NC, sought to silence all street preachers in a grossly unconstitutional infringement of free speech. Please pray for the Lord’s favor and victory in court as the NCLL fights on behalf of these faithful NC preachers in federal court. Pray specifically for God’s protection for this longstanding liberty of Americans to share our faith publicly.
As 2019 continues to unfold, thank you for faithfully praying on behalf of those facing injustice and loss and praising God for His mercies. “Is any among you afflicted? let him pray. Is any merry? let him sing psalms” (James 5:13).
Thank you again for your prayerful partnership in defending life and liberty!