A Message from Finn Laursen, CEAI Executive Director
National Day of Prayer Sounds the Alarm
I was honored and blessed last week to represent CEAI members at the Washington, DC events of the National Day of Prayer. This event, held the fourth Thursday of every April, brings Christians and Jews together in gatherings across the country to pray for our nation. Hopefully some of you were able to attend local NDP events. Many of the speakers at the DC events lamented recent attacks on our religious freedoms and the scriptural foundations of marriage to underscore the need for prayer for the nation.
On Wednesday evening Dr. James Dobson, President of, “Family Talk,” shocked attendees by calling attention to recent activities by Michael, “Mikey,” Weinstein, President of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF), an organization that, according to their website, “is dedicated to ensuring that all members of the United States Armed Forces fully receive the Constitutional guarantee of religious freedom to which they and all Americans are entitled by virtue of the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.” This is a roundabout way of saying that their mission is to prevent anyone in the military from sharing their faith with others in the military. Weinstein was recently appointed by the pentagon as a consultant in matters of religious tolerance. To understand the extreme anti-Christian view this “consultant” has, you may want to read the article he wrote recently for the Huffington Post where, among other rants against Christians, he wrote, “we face incredibly well-funded gangs of fundamentalist Christian monsters who terrorize their fellow Americans by forcing their weaponized and twisted version of Christianity upon their helpless subordinates in our nation's armed forces.” So we spent some time at the National Day of Prayer lifting up members of the military; that their right to speak freely about their faith is not restricted.
Contact: Finn Laursen (CEAI) 888-798-1124
P.O. Box 45610 • Westlake, OH 44145 • http://www.ceai.org
April 30, 2013
Teachers’ Union Confronted to “Set My People Free!”
Los Angeles, California, April 30, 2013--The Center for Individual Rights (CIR) with Jones Day partner, Michael Carvin, serving as lead counsel has filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Central District of California against the National Education Association (NEA) on behalf of Christian Educators Association International (CEAI) and its California members. NEA is the largest teachers union in the nation. CEAI is asking the courts to stop the NEA and its local and state affiliates from forcing educators who choose not to join the union to pay fees in their support.
“The NEA and its affiliates support issues that many of our members do not want to invest in such as abortion and same-sex marriage and the union opposes other issues many of our members support such as school choice and other forms of school reform,” said CEAI Executive Director Finn Laursen.
In California teachers can opt out of the union, but are still required to pay union fees unless their objection is religious. As such they must go through the cumbersome process to become a religious objector in which case fees must be surrendered to a charity approved by the union. CEAI is simply asking the courts to free its members from being forced to contribute financially to support a union agenda they do not agree with or to be compelled by the union to financially support a charity.
“Forcing our members to financially support a union they choose not to belong to for the opportunity to practice their profession seems contrary to the principles our forefathers penned into our Constitution. We are not questioning teachers’ rights to form or join unions, the rights of unions to collective bargain, or the practice of unions promoting liberal agendas, political issues, or candidates. We are simply asking that teachers be set free from being forced to financially support the union and its activities,” explained Laursen.
Transformation - A Poem
We are striving for our students to learn
While the enemy fights us at every turn!
Do we live and teach as if that's true?
Or is school just another thing we "do"?
If we look at the real problem at hand,
Is it that God is not present in our land?
Or is it really that we are ill equipped
To face the struggles of this challenging trip?
Are we prepared through prayer
To the author of hope?
Do we use the tools
We have been given to cope?
Instead of looking for the problem out there,
Could it really be that it IS about us and how much we care?
Not about the kids but about what others think
...is that a truth we are willing to drink?
Jesus was a rebel and a lover of sinners,
Though we invite them to church, do we have them to our dinners?
Do the lost seek us out to help them survive?
Or do they see us coming and run and hide?
To make a difference in our schools
That others can see,
It doesn't start with them
It starts with ME!
By Chandra Emerson, English Teacher at South Oldham High School in Oldham County Public Schools, Crestwood, Kentucky. Chandra is a Modern Day Daniel from the Kentucky Daniel Weekend February, 2013
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