New Life Covenant Church in Chicago and Alliance Defending Freedom severely criticized the subpoena of various pastors’ sermons in Houston, Texas, due to their objection to an LGBT discrimination city ordinance that was passed recently.
“It’s a sad day in the United States of America, in the land of the free, when the First Amendment rights of religious leaders are being trampled on by a mayor for political gain and/or exposure,” Wilfredo De Jesús, senior pastor of New Life Covenant Church in Chicago, Illinois, said in a statement.
Houston’s mayor, Annise Parker, has denied she knew about the city’s attempt to subpoena the sermons and correspondence with their congregations of five pastors. But one of those pastors, Dave Welch, who is the executive director of the Houston area U.S. Pastor Council, told The Christian Post earlier that the mayor herself initiated the action in response to a legal battle over the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance.
“As an evangelical pastor, I have the responsibility to my church and the body of Christ to share the Gospel,” De Jesús said. “These pastors have the same responsibility. I understand that what we preach may not be popular, it may not be politically relevant and it may offend people. Jesus is our example. He understood His call and proceeded to preach/teach the Good News until he was brutally crucified on the cross for His message.”
The subpoenas were issued by Houston’s city attorney in response to a lawsuit filed by opponents of the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance, that allow men and women who identify as transgender or opposite sex to use the facilities such as restrooms of their choice.
What is not acceptable is a government body deploying “bullying tactics that perpetuate an environment of hate toward Christians and bigotry toward our Christian beliefs,” Pastor De Jesús said, calling on all pastors to demand that the City of Houston and Mayor Parker “disengage from these frivolous subpoenas and issue a formal apology to help bring forth reconciliation.”
Click here for more.
SOURCE: The Christian Post