Pulpit Initiative | Pulpit Freedom Sunday

To book an interview, click on the "Book an Interview" button.
Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Description:  Pulpit Freedom Sunday is an event associated with the Pulpit Initiative, a legal effort designed to secure the free speech rights of pastors in the pulpit. Pulpit Freedom Sunday encourages pastors to exercise their constitutionally protected freedom to speak truth into every area of life from the pulpit. Alliance Defending Freedom also hopes to eventually go to court to have the Johnson Amendment struck down as unconstitutional for its regulation of sermons, which are protected by the First Amendment.


ADF joins panel discussion on vague tax laws muzzling nonprofits, churches

ADF, Evangelical Council on Financial Accountability, Center for American Progress, and Public Citizen to discuss clearer tax rules
Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Attorney sound bite:  Erik Stanley

WHO: ADF Senior Legal Counsel Erik Stanley
WHAT: Available for media interviews following panel discussion on tax rules governing nonprofits and churches
WHEN: Thursday, Jan. 29, following the panel discussion, which begins at 9 a.m. EST
WHERE: The National Press Club, First Amendment Room, 529 14th St. NW, Washington

WASHINGTON – Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Legal Counsel Erik Stanley will be available for media interviews Thursday following a panel discussion on the need for clearer tax rules governing nonprofits and churches. Stanley will join the Evangelical Council on Financial Accountability, the Center for American Progress, Public Citizen, and keynote speaker Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.).

The discussion, “A Rising Tide Will Lift All Boats: Evangelical and Progressive Perspectives on the Need for Clear Rules for Nonprofits,” will focus on vague IRS tax rules pertaining to the participation of nonprofits in political campaign-related activity. The panelists will discuss the need for better guidelines defining political activity and provide specific recommendations.

“Churches, not the IRS, should be allowed to decide what they want to talk about from the pulpit,” said Stanley, who is also director of the ADF Church Project and its Pulpit Freedom effort. “The IRS should not have vague tax laws that can arbitrarily be enforced against churches to revoke their tax-exempt status. Churches and other religious congregations deserve clearer tax guidelines so they can enjoy their constitutionally protected freedoms without fear of government retaliation.”

The discussion will be moderated by Dan Busby, president of the Evangelical Council on Financial Accountability, and Lisa Gilbert, director of Public Citizen’s Congress Watch.

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization that advocates for the right of people to freely live out their faith.

# # #

Additional resources: Pulpit Initiative | Pulpit Freedom Sunday

Scroll down to view additional resources pertaining to this case and its surrounding issue
Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Previous news releases:

  • 2014-10-10: Pulpit Freedom participation exceeds 1,800 pastors, continues through Election Day
  • 2014-10-02: Pulpit Freedom Sunday vs. IRS
  • 2013-06-07: Pastors to again stand for pulpit freedom this weekend
  • 2012-10-05: Record 1,500 pastors to participate in Pulpit Freedom Sunday this weekend
  • 2012-10-01: All present for pulpit freedom: pastors in 50 states, DC, Puerto Rico will fight IRS
  • 2012-09-26: Grand total: More than 1,000 pastors to challenge IRS
  • 2011-09-30: Participation in ADF Pulpit Freedom Sunday more than quadruples over last year
  • 2011-09-12: 86 percent of pastors say gov’t shouldn’t regulate sermons under threat of revoking tax exemption
  • 2010-09-27: Participants in annual Pulpit Freedom Sunday increase for third year
  • 2010-09-23: Pastors ready for third-annual Pulpit Freedom Sunday on Sept. 26
  • 2010-06-22: ADF agrees to represent SD church reported to IRS
  • 2010-02-17: ADF attorney to debate at Stanford Law School on IRS religious speech restrictions
  • 2009-10-05: Maine churches threatened with IRS complaints for supporting marriage
  • 2009-09-24: Pastors ready for second annual Pulpit Freedom Sunday on Sept. 27
  • 2009-07-28: IRS withdraws audit on Minn. pastor’s sermons
  • 2008-09-29: ADF prepared to defend churches against possible IRS free speech investigations
  • 2008-09-25: Pulpit Freedom Sunday
  • 2008-05-09: ADF announces new initiative to reclaim pastors’ First Amendment rights

Commentary:
  • Jeffery Ventrella: Politics and the pulpit: Profane, provocative, or prudent? (Part 1) (Canon and Culture, 2014-11-03)
  • Erik Stanley: IRS to churches: To exercise free speech, give up your tax-exempt status (CNS News, 2014-10-15)
  • Erik Stanley: IRS apologizes, more apologies necessary (Townhall.com, 2013-05-30)
  • Erik Stanley: Government can’t require churches to abandon constitutional freedoms (Townhall.com, 2012-10-08)
  • Alan Sears: Why pastors must be free to preach on politics (Townhall.com, 2011-10-05)
  • Erik Stanley: IRS has no business telling pastors how to choose their words (Washington Times, 2011-10-02)
  • Erik Stanley: What is Pulpit Freedom Sunday all about? (Townhall.com, 2011-09-14)

Legal documents, related news, and other related resources available in the right panel when this page is viewed at ADFmedia.org.