Christian organizations are trying to shore up religious freedom protections as the U.S. Supreme Court is set to nationally redefine marriage.
Special rights for homosexuals mean more government action against and less protection for Christians.
Religious organizations have signed on to a letter to Congress that focuses on tax-exempt status, something religious organizations might have to give up if the court makes the right to homosexual “marriage” the law of the land. From the Christian News Network:
Daniel Egeler, the president of the Association of Christian Schools International, Al Mohler, the president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Michael Ferris, the Chancellor of Patrick Henry College and Alan Hodak, the executive director of the Minnesota Association of Christian Schools, were among those who signed the letter to House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
“We write to express our deep concern with the potential loss of tax-exempt status for educational institutions should the Supreme Court find constitutional legitimacy for same-sex marriage,” it read.
The letter pointed to the dialogue during oral argument before the U.S. Supreme Court in April, as Justice Samuel Alito asked U.S. Solicitor General Donald Verrilli, Jr. if a faith-based college or university could be stripped of its tax exempt status should the court rule in favor of such marital arrangements.
A religious organization’s tax-exempt status is based on the First Amendment’s religious freedom guarantee, but the “social betterment” rationale also supports this status. As churches, hospitals, museums, etc., are focused on caring for and educating the populace, not on profit, they promote social welfare (so the argument goes). There’s no Establishment Clause violation, because secular organizations qualify as well.
Will churches and Christian schools end up losing their tax-exempt status as a penalty for opposing the homosexual lobby?