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Last year, Dr. Jerry Prevo, pastor of the Anchorage Baptist Temple, Alaska’s largest church, decided to purchase full-page ads in state newspapers, defining what individuals may do – under constitutional protection – in regard to publicly celebrating the Christmas season.
Dr. Prevo, who is chairman of the Liberty University Board of Trustees, thought the ads were necessary in this age of political correctness that has convinced many of our fellow Americans that Christmas is a dirty word.
In many public venues, and in our schools and workplaces, many Americans have discovered that they are not permitted to erect Christmas decorations, exchange Christmas cards or sing Christmas carols.
Dr. Prevo, after posting the ads in Alaska newspapers, said, “The ads were a greater success than I had ever imagined. We received an outpouring of community support, and best of all, the pre-emptive measures resulted in not one incident of religious discrimination. I would encourage every pastor and church to participate.”
He had worked with the Orlando-based Liberty Counsel to formulate the language of the ads, which are part of Liberty Counsel’s “Friend or Foe Christmas Campaign.” That campaign is designed to prevent blatant religious discrimination during the Christmas holidays.
Dr. Prevo’s effort and the work by Mat Staver at Liberty Counsel inspired me to get involved in the campaign.
This week, I decided to purchase two full-page ads in our local newspaper, the Lynchburg News & Advance, with an ad very similar to the one Dr. Prevo posted in his state’s newspapers.
Furthermore, I am calling on pastors, churches and individuals to join Liberty Counsel’s “Friend or Foe Christmas Campaign” by purchasing ads in newspapers across the country.
We need to draw a line in the sand and resist bullying tactics by the American Civil Liberties Union, Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, the American Atheists and other leftist organizations that intimidate school and government officials by spreading misinformation about Christmas.
Celebrating Christmas is constitutional!
Thomas Road Baptist Church, the church I’ve pastored for almost 50 years, is sponsoring local newspaper ads promoting the Christmas campaign. The ads, which are available in different sizes, point out that celebrating Christmas is still legal in schools, on public property and in private businesses.
The ads also offer free legal assistance by Liberty Counsel to individuals facing persecution for celebrating Christmas. Liberty Counsel provides a free educational legal memo [.pdf document], with a pledge to be a “Friend” to those entities which do not discriminate against Christmas and a “Foe” to those that do.
Mat Staver, president and general counsel of Liberty Counsel, said, “I am thrilled to see so many pastors and churches promoting the Christmas Campaign. For too many years we have remained silent while the ACLU and others like them have played the role of the Grinch. We will no longer remain silent. We have no intention of letting misinformation chase our religious liberty or our religious heritage from the public marketplace. It’s time to set the record straight – Christmas is constitutional.”
Earlier this year, Liberty Counsel announced that thousands of public school teachers and administrators, who are members of Christian Educators Association International, are also joining the “Friend or Foe Christmas Campaign.”
The momentum is changing, but we must work together to reclaim Christmas! I urge pastors across the nation to join me, Dr. Prevo, Mat Staver and thousands of others who are joining hands this Christmas to reclaim our right to sing God’s praises throughout the land at this blessed time of year!