AB2943 Forces Summit Ministries out of California

Jeff Myers, May 1 2018

When I heard about the California Assembly bill AB2943, I thought “So this is the kind of trick leftists pull when they have a veto-proof majority in a state legislature.”

But when AB2943 actually passed the California house, I got chills. The bill, which is nearly certain to pass in the Senate and be signed by the governor, includes a prohibition on “efforts to change behaviors or gender expressions, or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same sex.”

Bottom line: AB2943 is a dog whistle to the left that Christians holding traditional views are fair game for discrimination, smears and frivolous lawsuits. It denies constitutional protection to those who hold traditional views of sexuality and marriage.

With this legislation looming, I decided to suspend our California conference and arrange for registrants to join us at one of our other locations. Summit will not bend God’s truth to accommodate the state of California. Nor can we put our students, staff, and faculty at risk.

Fortunately, we are still free to present our conferences in 49 states – and that’s exactly what we’re going to do.

Plus, we’re doing everything we can to mobilize our California alumni to demand that their representatives stop attacking free speech and freedom of religion. Our friends at the California Family Policy Council have excellent resources that explain the next legislative steps Californians can take.

Do not be fooled. This insanity is coming to every state: Iowa, Arizona, Florida—all of them. We must be on guard and work toward restoring common-sense governance.

Send your best young people to Summit this summer and we’ll equip them to stand with you. Why would we watch idly as freedom is attacked generation after generation when we can put a stop to it by training godly leaders?

People have asked about the financial impact of leaving California. It’s not cheap. Many California families are financially-strapped and I’ve committed to buy airplane tickets for every student who needs help to relocate. If you can chip in, I’d be grateful. Your financial partnership helps us train and walk alongside those who love Jesus and love liberty.

Please watch the urgent 80-second video message I recorded to explain this crazy controversy.

We will not leave our friends in California behind, and we will provide a way for these students to still experience Summit at one of our other locations. Please read the full press release. Let’s fight together, shall we? When everything we believe is being attacked, it’s time to stand.

Cheering for you,

–Jeff

Jeff Myers, Ph.D. President

A Message from Jarvis Wipf – Capitol Commission

Mr. Wipf recently began serving as a chaplain to the capitol community this legislative session through a ministry called Capitol Commission. Here is his perspective on the 2018 Legislative session, along with more information on Capitol Commission.

“At the conclusion of this year’s legislative session, I was asked for a recap on the ministry of Capitol Commission.  For those who may not be familiar with Capitol Commission, it is a national missions organization with the goal of reaching Capitol communities for Christ.  We are non-political, so we do not lobby for legislation.  Our goal is to be a pastoral presence and help all legislators, regardless of party affiliation, become disciples of Jesus Christ. 

Before session started I spent several weeks traveling around the state meeting legislators to introduce myself and the ministry of Capitol Commission. From three-hour conversations over lunch, invitations to their homes, and multiple meetings at the office were all means of getting to know legislators. These early contacts were key as session started, because they gave me a base that helped introduce me to many other legislators and provided opportunities to minister that otherwise would not have happened.

Since this was my first session, I tried to immerse myself into the culture of the legislative session by attending as many functions as I could.  This included sitting in on committee hearings, watching session, eating lunch with as many different legislators as possible, and going to evening social events.  At social events in the evening there was time to engage in a longer conversations and this opened the door for more interactions in the Capitol.

During the second week of session I handed out an introductory Bible study to all the legislators with an invitation to an evening Bible Study.  A Bible study on the Gospel of John launched during week three with 12 legislators present.  This number stayed consistent throughout the rest of the session.

The Gospel of John presents Jesus in a way “so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name.”  Studies from John included:  The Deity of Christ, Responding to the Light, The Humanity of Christ, John’s Testimony to Christ, Come and See the Christ, The Manifested Glory of Christ, and The Authority of Christ Over Worship. 

I printed this weekly Bible study and distributed it to all 105 legislators.  After a few weeks of reading the Bible studies some then attended the evening study.  Many  told me that although they were unable to come to the actual study, they really appreciated the written study.  One legislator told me that he was passing it on to his spouse, and they were discussing it together.  God’s Word will accomplish His purposes, and there is fruit from these Bible studies!  One legislator told me on the last day of session that they were “learning a lot” from the studies.

Functioning as a chaplain in the Capitol opened many doors to pray for a wide variety of needs.  From situations dealing with health issues of family members, to death, to wisdom in how to pitch a bill in a way that was honoring to God, to being a witness among their peers.  I was also honored to open both the House and the Senate in prayer.

This first session has been a great launch of the ministry of Capitol Commission.  I made connections with legislators that will continue to grow over time.  The Gospel and the greatness of Jesus were presented on a weekly basis.  Many spoke of their gratefulness for the presence of a chaplain on a daily basis, and I heard comments like “He is always in a strategic location.” Please continue to pray with me for our leaders (1 Timothy 2:1-4).”

Jarvis Wipf – State Director – Capitol Commission

Contact: jarvis.wipf@capitolcom.org

My Inspiration From FHA Action’s Capitol Summit

Guest Writer: Pastor Joe Ganahl

Pastor Joe Ganahl

As a pastor, I am passionately involved in sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ with the world and I am not ashamed of it. I am also not ashamed of being an American and I passionately love our country and her Christian values. I preached on “politics” for several weeks surrounding the November election… not necessarily on a particular candidate… but on each parties political platform and encouraged our people to vote on the platforms, not necessarily candidates. One platform was unashamedly Christian, while the other platform was filled with opposition to biblical values. They were some of the most powerful… and most informative… messages I had ever preached. Praise God that SD… and the rest of our nation… elected a party and people who share those biblical values… back to positions of power.

On February 7th… I was able to attend the FHA Action’s SD Ministry Leaders’ Capitol Summit in Pierre. It was the first one I had ever attended. I’d love to say I had a great time and can’t wait to go back… but for me, as an introvert… it was a little uncomfortable. I didn’t know anyone except Dale Bartscher… and he was a little too busy to babysit me all day!! However, as I walked around the Capitol and witnessed numerous State Representatives, Senators, and Cabinet officials boldly proclaiming their faith… God spoke to me about how they needed our support and our prayers.

I came back with a big project in mind. Personal prayer cards for every Representative, every Senator, and every Cabinet official… regardless of political party… based on 1 Tim 2:1-3…
“First of all, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions and thanksgivings be made for everyone… for kings and all those in authority… so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity… this is good and it pleases God our Savior.”

That’s a tall task. Hundreds of envelopes had to be addressed and stamped… and hundreds had to be taken by our congregation and personally written in. My administrative assistants, Darlis and Sarah, did an amazing job of getting that ready in a short week and then preparing them for our congregation. We made an announcement on a Sunday morning… telling people what we were doing… and asking them to take at least one card, but possibly more… and write something in there encouraging our elected officials. By the end of the day… ALL the cards had been taken. God was using us to do exactly what He had planned. To pray for those in authority… all those in authority… even those we might possibly disagree with. We hope we were able to be a blessing and encouragement to those folks during an extremely difficult time… and to let them know there were people that supported them and were praying for them. It was a great privilege for us to be involved in this way.

Family Research Council Praises House Vote to End Taxpayer Funding of Abortion

Guest Writer: Family Research Council

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today the U.S. House of Representatives passed the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act,” (H.R. 7) sponsored by U.S. Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.). This bill would permanently prohibit taxpayer dollars from being used to pay for abortions in Obamacare health plans starting the next plan year. This bill also protects Americans of conscience by requiring the full disclosure of abortion coverage in Obamacare plans so people can make informed decisions about their healthcare plans right now.

Family Research Council (FRC) President Tony Perkins responded with the following comments:

“The 115th Congress has started on strong footing by passing this vital legislation ensuring that no American taxpayer dollars are used to pay for elective abortions. Following an election in which voters chose a pro-life president and a pro-life Congress, our nation is moving toward a new era where all human beings, born and unborn, are protected under the law. Abortion is not healthcare, and should not be funded since we know government funding of abortion increases it. Passage of this bill is a victory not just for taxpayers but women, and their unborn children.

“Today’s vote reflects the reality that Americans are becoming more pro-life as science has increased our understanding of the humanity of unborn children. This bill restores the status quo against government funding or subsidizing abortion, a position supported by 61 percent of Americans.

“For over 40 years, the Hyde Amendment and other pro-life provisions have been renewed annually to prevent federal funds from being used to pay for abortions or healthcare plans which include abortion coverage. For over 40 years, Republicans and Democrats have come together to ensure that despite our differences, we should at least be able to agree that the government should not subsidize abortion. Obamacare violates this longstanding consensus.

“The Senate must take up this bill to ensure that government no longer spends people’s hard earned money on insurance with elective abortion. We must pray and work to end abortion in America until every child is welcomed into the world and protected under our laws. Ending taxpayer funding of abortion is a good first step on this journey,” concluded Perkins.