VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 10/1/21)—The Rev. Adam Russell Taylor, president of Sojourners, led discussion about the role of Christians in rebuilding America’s democracy during American Baptist Home Mission Societies’ latest edition of The Justice Dialogues held online Wednesday.
The Justice Dialogues gatherings are forums for open discussion, reflection and encouragement, primarily among American Baptists who are in the work of healing and transforming communities and systems. ABHMS will continue to convene The Justice Dialogues as a safe and brave space for activists and advocates to be in community with each other, tell our stories, receive encouragement, provide updates and offer prayers that fortify our work together.
“We launched The Justice Dialogues in 2020 in consideration of all that was going on in our larger world and that continues to be unfolding,” said ABHMS Executive Director Dr. Jeffrey Haggray. “We began them because we are aware that many of you on this call are working tirelessly on a daily basis to make an impact in your local communities.”
Noting that the United States is “facing the most grave assaults on our democracy since the height of the civil rights struggle,” Taylor pointed out that the right to vote is in jeopardy.
“We know that voting has been a contested issue from the very beginning, so it’s not surprising that it’s still contested today,” he said. However, he noted that he previously took for granted that the right to vote was secure and that he couldn’t imagine it would become so threatened.
Taylor later stressed what he referred to as three critical points:
- “Voter suppression is real, but voter fraud is a myth and a lie. Presently there are 400 legislative bills in 49 states that interfere with access to voting. Though claims of voter fraud in the 2020 elections persist, no evidence has been presented to support those claims.”
- “These assaults on the right to vote represent a core assault on imago dei” [or “image of God”].
- “We can’t just protect the right to vote. We have to have a broader commitment to safeguard—and maybe even transform—our democracy.”
Upcoming Justice Dialogues gatherings will be held Oct. 27, Dec. 1 and Jan. 26.
American Baptist Home Mission Societies partners with American Baptists to promote Christian faith, cultivate Christ-centered leaders and disciples, and bring healing and transformation to communities across the United States and Puerto Rico.
American Baptist Churches USA is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with approximately 5,000 congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.