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RESOURCE CENTER AND ARCHIVES

Alabama Baptist State Convention annual meeting 2013 resolutionscomment (0)

November 19, 2013


RESOLUTION NO. 1

ON CONTRACEPTIVE SERVICES MANDATE

WHEREAS, The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services included a “contraceptive services mandate” in its regulations implementing the Affordable Care Act; and

WHEREAS, The contraceptive services mandate requires certain employers to include in employee health plans coverage for specific drugs or therapies identified as methods of contraception; and

WHEREAS, Some of the so-called “contraceptive services” which must be provided under the contraceptive services mandate are not intended to prevent conception at all, but instead result in the destruction of a fertilized egg after conception has already occurred; and

WHEREAS, Alabama Baptists have embraced the belief that children are a blessing from the Lord from the very moment of conception (Jeremiah 1:5, Psalm 139:13-14), and have consistently defended both the right to life of the unborn and restrictions on wanton abortion; and

WHEREAS, Many employers, both Baptist and non-Baptist, have strong religious convictions which forbid them from arranging for or facilitating any medical procedure which would result in abortion on demand as a form of contraception; and

WHEREAS, Employers who refuse to violate these religious convictions are facing severe financial penalties for non-compliance with the contraceptive services mandate; and

WHEREAS, The limited exemption in the regulations for religious employers and the “accommodation” for eligible religious organizations adopted by the Department of Health and Human Services are inadequate to protect the religious freedoms of non-profit religious employers, and provide no protection at all for the religious freedom rights of citizens who own businesses in the private sector; and

WHEREAS, For all of these reasons, the contraceptive services mandate represents a clear and direct threat to the free exercise of religion guaranteed in the Bill of Rights; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention, meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, November 12-13, 2013, reaffirm our opposition to abortion on demand, including abortion methods falsely labeled as “emergency contraception;” and be it further

RESOLVED, That we stand firmly against any legislation which requires citizens to violate sincerely-held religious convictions regarding the sanctity of human life in order to comply with the law of the land; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we call on the Department of Health and Human Services to withdraw the contraceptive services mandate or to provide clear and meaningful exemptions from the mandate based on conscientious religious objections; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we commend the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention and GuideStone Financial Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention for their diligent efforts, including filing or participating in legal actions, to protect the unborn and to preserve the religious freedom that is guaranteed under the laws of this nation; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we express solidarity with those other persons across our nation who are engaged in legal actions opposing the contraceptive services mandate in order to champion a robust view of religious freedom in America.

__________________________________________________

RESOLUTION NO. 2

ON THE WOMEN’S HEALTH AND SAFETY ACT

WHEREAS, The Alabama Baptist State Convention has consistently, in recent years, affirmed the biblical position that life begins at conception; and

WHEREAS, Human life is to be protected at all stages; and

WHEREAS, The 2012 Alabama Baptist State Convention passed a resolution urging the Alabama Legislature to increase regulation on abortion in Alabama; and

WHEREAS, The Alabama Legislature passed and the Governor signed the Women’s Health and Safety Act which requires that abortionists must have hospital admitting privileges; and

WHEREAS, The Women’s Health and Safety Act requires that abortion centers would have to raise substantially their standards of treatment and care to those of emergency health care centers; and

WHEREAS, This legislation would make it a felony for anyone other than a physician to perform an abortion; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the Alabama Baptist State Convention express appreciation to the Alabama Legislature for passing the Women’s Health and Safety Act; and be it further

RESOLVED, That the Alabama Baptist State Convention express appreciation to Governor Robert Bentley for signing the Women’s Health and Safety Act; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention, meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, on November 12-13, 2013, express appreciation to Governor Robert Bentley as he called for strong pro-life action in his 2013 State of the State address.

______________________________________________

RESOLUTION NO. 3

ON SEXUAL ABUSE OF CHILDREN

WHEREAS, Alabama Baptists have spoken strongly against abuse of children in a resolution titled “On Preventing Child Abuse” adopted by messengers to the 2007 State Convention annual meeting; and

WHEREAS, Southern Baptists continue to oppose all forms of child abuse, including sexual abuse and physical and emotional violence, as evidenced by a resolution adopted by messengers to the 2013 Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting; and

WHEREAS, The Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions has made available on its website the report of its Task Force on Sexual Misconduct in Churches, including such resources as: “Protecting Children and Youth from Sexual Misconduct in Your Church,” “Creating Child Protection Policies,” and “How and Where to Report Abuse to DHR”; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, November 12-13, 2013, call upon all Alabama Baptists to stand with our Lord Jesus in loving and protecting children as He does; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we likewise call upon all Alabama Baptists to cooperate fully with law enforcement officials in reporting allegations or accusations of sexual abuse to the authorities and exposing and bringing to justice all perpetrators, sexual or otherwise, who criminally harm children; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we strongly urge Alabama Baptist churches to utilize background checks like those provided through LifeWay Christian Resources (www.lifeway.com/backgroundchecks), databases of sexual predators such as the US Department of Justice sex offender database linked at SBC.net (www.SBC.net/localchurches/ministryhelp.asp), or other relevant resources in screening all potential staff and volunteer workers, particularly those who minister to children and youth; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage all Alabama Baptist leaders and employees to utilize denominational resources to better protect our children from criminal abuse; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we urge all Alabama Baptists to pray for children who are victims of abuse, to stand for their protection from abuse, and to support safe and healthy children’s ministries in our churches and communities.

______________________________________________

RESOLUTION NO. 4

ON STRENGTHENING BIBLICAL MARRIAGE

WHEREAS, God established the family as the primary and most influential social institution of mankind and ordained that each human family begin only with the marriage of one man and one woman (Genesis 2:18-25; Matthew 19:4-6; Mark 10:6-8; Hebrews 13:4); and

WHEREAS, The husband and wife forming a two-parent family is God’s ideal, ordained by God to perform a unique role in the birth, loving discipline, and nurture of children; and

WHEREAS, The New Testament plainly teaches the beauty and value of a love-filled monogamy between one man and one woman; and

WHEREAS, The viability, strength, and stability of the social order within any nation is more dependent upon the well-being of this traditional family structure than any other social institution or agency; and

WHEREAS, The Baptist Faith and Message, adopted by the Southern Baptist Convention in 2000, contains “Article XVIII. The Family,” which states, “Marriage is the uniting of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime”; and

WHEREAS, The sacred institution of marriage is now under destructive attack throughout our society by certain governmental bodies, the military, corporations, as well as numerous other private and public entities; and

WHEREAS, The social problems of child poverty, child abuse, juvenile delinquency, violent crimes committed by children, sexual promiscuity and teen pregnancy are often related to broken marriages and fractured families; and

WHEREAS, Many people turn to divorce as an early solution to problems that could and should be solved in other ways; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention, meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, on November 12-13, 2013, express our enthusiastic support for those policies of public and private organizations which aim to strengthen the biblical marriage commitment and to reverse the trend of the disintegration of the family as defined and sanctioned by Scripture; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we affirm our conviction that the restoration of happy and biblical family relationships is one of the most critical moral imperatives of our time; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we seek to practice, and encourage others to practice, biblical family relationships which reflect Christ’s love; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we urge churches not only to proclaim that monogamy is Christ’s teaching for marriage but also to provide compassionate help for couples who face marital problems; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage Alabama Baptist churches and ministers to make it a priority to provide premarital or marital counseling, or to develop effective referral relationships; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we commend the Office of LeaderCare & Church Administration as well as the Alabama Baptist Children’s Homes & Family Ministries for raising awareness about resources, such as counseling services, to strengthen marriages.

________________________________________________

RESOLUTION NO. 5

ON APPRECIATION FOR ROYAL AMBASSADORS

WHEREAS, Royal Ambassadors were organized on May 15, 1908, during the annual meeting of the Woman’s Missionary Union in Hot Springs, Arkansas, for the purpose of teaching missions to boys in Southern Baptist churches; and

WHEREAS, The Royal Ambassador organization has served its purpose nobly, educating more than 2 million boys in biblical missionary principles and winning tens of thousands to faith in Christ through chapter meetings, Royal Ambassador Camps, and other Royal Ambassador activities; and

WHEREAS, Many thousands of missionaries, pastors, church staff members, deacons, church leadership volunteers, and other men committed to the cause of Christ and His kingdom were greatly influenced by their experiences as members or leaders of Royal Ambassadors; and

WHEREAS, Royal Ambassadors through the decades have learned to share their faith, to be strengthened in their Christian walk, and to support missions by personal involvement, stewardship, and prayer; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention, meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, on November 12-13, 2013, commend the many dedicated Royal Ambassador leaders and members, asking that God would continue to glorify His name and build His kingdom by blessing the Royal Ambassador organization in its mission efforts.

________________________________________________

RESOLUTION NO. 6

ON THE COOPERATIVE PROGRAM

WHEREAS, Alabama Baptists are pacesetters among state conventions and consistently among the very top leaders in giving through the Cooperative Program; and

WHEREAS, The mandate of Acts 1:8 to spread the Gospel in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and the ends of the earth is a simultaneous not sequential command; and

WHEREAS, Since 1925 the Cooperative Program has provided a way for churches to support missions in all the world, all the time, at the same time; and

WHEREAS, The Cooperative Program is a highly effective channel for providing support for missions and ministries in Alabama, across the United States and around the world; and

WHEREAS, The ministries of Southern Baptists missionaries, at home and abroad, are supported and sustained by gifts through the Cooperative Program; and

WHEREAS, Dr. Frank Page, president and chief executive officer of the Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee, has called upon churches in the SBC to accept the 1% Cooperative Program Challenge; and

WHEREAS, An increasing number of Alabama Baptist churches have committed to this 1% Challenge over a four-year period by raising by 1/4% each year the percentage of a congregation's undesignated receipts given through the Cooperative Program; and

WHEREAS, The Office of Cooperative Program & Stewardship Development of the State Board of Missions provides speakers, printed materials, reports, and other resources to the churches of this State Convention regarding CP gifts and faithful financial stewardship of Alabama Baptists; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention, meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, on November 12-13, 2013, affirm the Cooperative Program as a God-given strategy to support and strengthen Southern Baptist efforts to share the Gospel throughout the world; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we are grateful for Alabama Baptist churches that give sacrificially through the Cooperative Program; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we commend all who promote and support missions through the Cooperative Program among our State Convention's family of churches, associations, and State Convention ministries.

________________________________________________

RESOLUTION NO. 7

ON SERVING ACROSS ALABAMA

WHEREAS, The Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions has adopted a 10-year effort known as GPS: God's Plan for Sharing; and

WHEREAS, The goal of GPS is, that over a 10-year period from 2010 to 2020, that all Alabama Baptists be encouraged to share their faith in Christ so that everyone in the state hears the Gospel: "Every Believer Sharing" and "Every Person Hearing"; and

WHEREAS, The 2014 GPS emphasis is Serving Across Alabama, which calls on churches to choose a day of service or a season of service in the name of Christ; and

WHEREAS, Such a time of service will offer Alabama Baptists an opportunity to reach the nations who have come to our state; and

WHEREAS, The State Board of Missions has made available through the Evangelism Office to each Alabama Baptist church a printed ministry resource titled His Heart, Our Hands: A Guide for Ministry Evangelism; and

WHEREAS, The resource provides more than two dozen detailed strategies on how to implement Serving Across Alabama in a local church setting; and

WHEREAS, Examples of Serving Across Alabama strategies include: outreach and ministry to international students and migrant families, literacy mission efforts, refugee resettlement, healthcare clinics, raising awareness regarding the availability of pregnancy care alternatives and post-abortion counseling for men and women, respite care for disabled persons and their families, and fairs, festivals, and other special events; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention, meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, on November 12-13, 2013, encourage our family of churches to consider a day of service or season of service for such a ministry evangelism effort during 2014; and be it further

RESOLVED, That each participating church commit to the Serving Across Alabama suggestion of celebrating as a congregation after the event as well as commitment to follow up with people encountered during the ministry outreach effort; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That churches seeking assistance and insight on implementation of Serving Across Alabama be encouraged to seek help through the Evangelism Office or their local Baptist association.

________________________________________________

RESOLUTION NO. 8

ON APPRECIATION FOR DR. CECIL TAYLOR

WHEREAS, Dr. Cecil Taylor served for 24 years at the University of Mobile from which he retired in 2013; and

WHEREAS, Dr. Taylor served well in several roles at the University, including: dean of the School of Christian Studies (formerly Chair of Division of Religion),1989-2012; professor of Christian studies, 1998-2013; director of graduate program in Christian studies, 1989-2013; and director of in-service guidance, 1989-2013; and

WHEREAS, Dr. Taylor produced full teaching notes now in use at the University by four classes in the School of Christian Ministries: Christian Worldview, Mission and Message of Jesus, Introduction to the Bible, and New Testament Introduction; and

WHEREAS, While at the University of Mobile, Dr. Taylor initiated and directed the University Missions program; led the first team to build a chapel in Esmaraldas, Brazil, 1992; formed, trained, and sent 132 mission teams totaling 1,624 people to 49 nations; raised $4.4 million for University Missions; recorded 13,143 first-time professions of faith; built 21 additional chapels for Baptist mission congregations in Brazil; and personally organized and led more than 75 short-term projects; and

WHEREAS, Dr. Taylor has published articles in SBC Cause, Gulf Coast Christian, Proclaim, Louisiana Baptist Message, The Alabama Baptist, Biblical Illustrator, Faith and Mission, and Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society; and

WHEREAS, Dr. Taylor contributed to Illustrated Life of Jesus (Nashville: Holman Reference, 2000); and

WHEREAS, Dr. Taylor has served as visiting professor in eight seminaries in Brazil and one in Singapore; and

WHEREAS, Dr. Taylor served as adjunct faculty for Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, 1988-1989; United Theological Seminary, Monroe, La., 1981-1987; and Baylor University Seminary Extension, Waco, Texas, 1980-1981; and

WHEREAS, Dr. Taylor served as pastor/associate pastor for nine churches in Louisiana, Texas, Kansas, and Missouri from 1962-1989, and as interim pastor for 19 churches in south Alabama and western Florida during his years at the University of Mobile; and

WHEREAS, Dr. Taylor served Southern Baptists in a variety of denominational roles, including: international ministries committee, Mobile Baptist Association, 2011-present; Bible study leader for the Alabama Baptist State Convention (1999) and Louisiana Baptist Convention (2004); trustee, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, 1992-2002; Southern Baptist Convention Committee on Nominations, 1986-1987; and as moderator for Waco Baptist Association (1980-1981) and Northeast Louisiana Baptist Association (1986-1987); now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention, meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, on November 12-13, 2013, commend Dr. Cecil Taylor for his service to the Lord Jesus Christ among Alabama Baptists; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That the Alabama Baptist State Convention expresses its gratitude to Dr. Cecil Taylor for the sacrifices made and ministry to Alabama Baptists, Southern Baptists, and beyond in service to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

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RESOLUTION NO. 9

ON APPRECIATION FOR DR. MARY SUE BENNETT

WHEREAS, Dr. Mary Sue Bennett née Calvin was born on October 2, 1941, in Joplin, Missouri; and

WHEREAS, she graduated from Joplin Senior High School, Joplin, Missouri, in 1959; received her Associate of Arts degree in May 1961 from Joplin Junior College; received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education from William Jewell College, Liberty, Missouri, in 1963; obtained her Master's degree in Religious Education from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Kentucky, in 1967, and completed postgraduate studies at Georgia College, Milledgeville, Georgia; in 1982, and

WHEREAS, she was married to William Donald Bennett in Joplin, Missouri, on February 25, 1967; and

WHEREAS, she began her career in 1963 as a fourth and fifth grade teacher at Eagle-Picher Elementary School in Joplin, Missouri, and then taught third grade at Dahlonega Elementary School in Dahlonega, Georgia, in 1968; and

WHEREAS, in 1972, she began working at First Baptist Church in Gainesville, Georgia, as the pastor's secretary, and then went on to hold the position of kindergarten director from 1973 to 1976; and

WHEREAS, she also worked as the pastor's secretary and financial secretary at First Baptist Church of Milledgeville, Georgia; and, following her postgraduate studies, as a second grade teacher at West End Elementary School, also in Milledgeville, Georgia, between 1977 and 1981; and

WHEREAS, Dr. Mary Sue Bennett relocated to Tuscaloosa, Alabama, in September of 1981 to accompany her husband in his ministry at the University of Alabama, following many years of dedicated ministry in the state of Georgia; and

WHEREAS, she provided secretarial support at Gray, Espy and Nettles in Tuscaloosa and as the administrative assistant in the Vice President's Office and the Department of Continuing Education at the University of Alabama; and

WHEREAS, after working at the University of Alabama, Dr. Mary Sue Bennett worked as the administrative assistant to the pastor at First Baptist Church in Tuscaloosa from 1983 to 1998; and

WHEREAS, Dr. Mary Sue Bennett currently serves as a State Missionary and Special Assistant to the Executive Director of the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions and has held this position since July 15, 1998; and

WHEREAS, she was honored by Alabama Governor Robert Bentley who proclaimed June 22, 2013 as Mary Sue Bennett Day in the state of Alabama and further declared that she is "a source of pride to the state of Alabama and is truly deserving of such an honor"; and

WHEREAS, she was awarded an honorary doctorate by Judson College, Marion, Alabama, on June 22, 2013; and

WHEREAS, she served the Lord in many ways alongside Don Bennett, an ordained minister, during his years of service as pastor and as Baptist Campus Minister; and

WHEREAS, the Bennetts have a son, Dr. John Calvin Bennett, and a daughter, Susan Bennett Smith, and four grandchildren, John Calvin Bennett, Jr., Jackson Calvin Bennett, Mary Catherine Smith, and Caroline Smith; and

WHEREAS, Dr. Mary Sue Bennett has served as an administrative and special assistant to Dr. Rick Lance for more than 30 years and thus has been a valuable partner in ministry as well as a personal friend to the Lance family; and

WHEREAS, she will retire from the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions on January 31, 2014; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That we the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention, meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, on November 12-13, 2013, express our gratitude and appreciation for the life and ministry service of Dr. Mary Sue Bennett; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we commend Dr. Mary Sue Bennett for her many years of service to our Lord; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we thank God for Dr. Mary Sue Bennett and ask His continued blessings on her and her family during retirement.

_______________________________________________

RESOLUTION NO. 10

ON APPRECIATION

WHEREAS, The messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, on November 12-13, 2013, have experienced inspiration, encouragement, worship, and fellowship; and

WHEREAS, We acknowledge our Lord's provision of these blessings; and

WHEREAS, We acknowledge the excellent hospitality of the people of Huntsville and of the Whitesburg Baptist Church staff and family; and

WHEREAS, The Madison Baptist Association, the Baptist churches in the area and the ministers of these churches have helped make this Convention a success; and

WHEREAS, We thank God for the outstanding leadership of our president, John Killian, vice presidents, Travis Coleman and Jim Cooley, as well as other officers of the Convention; and

WHEREAS, The various committees, Convention speakers, musicians, and other platform personalities have helped guide the affairs of this Convention with a Christ-like spirit; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention express gratitude to all who have contributed to the gracious spirit, impact on ministries and missions, and overall effectiveness of this annual meeting.

________________________________________________

RESOLUTION NO. 11

ON 175TH ANNIVERSARY OF JUDSON COLLEGE

WHEREAS, Members of the congregation of Siloam Baptist Church were instrumental in the founding of Judson College in 1838 in Marion, Alabama; and

WHEREAS, In 1843, Judson College became an entity of the Alabama Baptist State Convention; and

WHEREAS, Alabama Baptists through the Cooperative Program have contributed to the keeping of Judson College as an undergraduate institution of liberal arts and sciences in a setting that commends God's truth and light; and

WHEREAS, Judson's graduates were among the first to take Christianity to China, to serve the North American Mission Board and to carry the gospel to Japan; and

WHEREAS, Judson College prepares students for graduate and professional studies including medicine, social science, the arts, humanities, ministry, law, and business; and grants professional degrees in nursing, education, and social work; and

WHEREAS, Judson College is celebrating the 175th anniversary of her founding during the 2013-14 academic year; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention, meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, November 12-13, 2013, commend Judson College for keeping faith with her mission of Christian higher education for women, for being a vessel through which God calls students to His service; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we commend to each Alabama Baptist church a moment of celebration and recognition for Judson College during this anniversary year.

_______________________________________________

RESOLUTION NO. 12

ON PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT IN EDUCATION

WHEREAS, The church has a long history of supporting education; and

WHEREAS, Many of the great universities of America were started by churches and denominations; and

WHEREAS, Alabama Baptist churches and parents support in various ways pre-kindergarten through grade 12 in their communities, including public, private, parochial, and homeschooling; and

WHEREAS, A quality education can enhance the ministry of the church and an understanding of the Bible as it applies to life; and

WHEREAS, Education offers the potential for the improvement of one's lifestyle and productivity; and

WHEREAS, There are concerns over a new initiative in education called Common Core adopted in Alabama in 2010; and

WHEREAS, Some tenets of Common Core could be utilized to enable the federal government to dictate state curricula as well as the approaches and materials teachers use to help children; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention, meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, November 12-13, 2013, encourage parents to be involved in the education of their children; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we affirm all good and appropriate schools, including public, private, parochial, and homeschools; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage parents to support and monitor the schools where their children are educated; and be it further

RESOLVED, That parents be aware of what their children are taught by reading textbooks and, when appropriate, addressing concerns to school boards, the state department of education, and other educational leadership; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage the Alabama Legislature and the Alabama State Board of Education to carefully study and evaluate Common Core and its effects on our children and the entire educational system; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we urge those in authority to support the state's role in establishing and maintaining its own standards and curricula for Alabama public school students; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we offer praise and appreciation for all who are involved in the educational process, especially Christian teachers who reflect Christ in their lives as they educate our children.

________________________________________________

RESOLUTION NO. 13

ON SUPPORT OF PUBLIC AND NONPUBLIC SCHOOLS

WHEREAS, The First Amendment to the United States Constitution and the Alabama Religious Freedom Amendment guarantee all citizens free exercise of religion without interference by the national, state, or local governments; and

WHEREAS, A parent or guardian has a constitutional right to choose the type of K-12 education, public or nonpublic, for his or her child; and

WHEREAS, A parent or guardian has a constitutional right to choose a religious-based education for his or her child; and

WHEREAS, Parents have legally protected rights which are in accordance with Scripture (Deuteronomy 4:9, Joshua 24:15, Proverbs 22:6, Ephesians 6:1-4) for bringing up their children and determining the choice of education for their children, including church and other nonpublic schools; and

WHEREAS, Church schools are set up as ministries of local churches, groups of churches, and denominations; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Alabama Baptist State Convention, meeting in Huntsville, Alabama, November 12-13, 2013, affirm our support for public and nonpublic schools in Alabama; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we urge state leaders to protect the constitutional rights of religious freedoms for parents and churches; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That state leaders recognize and protect the educational autonomy of nonpublic schools.

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