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Thomas Peters: "Reflections on my Time Away"

[Our dear friend and colleague Thomas Peters has offered us these reflections on his injury and recovery process, and asked that we share them with our readers. We're only too happy to do so. Please continue to pray with us for Thomas, his wife, and all his family and friends. - Eds.] 

Thomas PetersOn a Friday in July I awoke in the early morning hours to someone beating on my back with their fists. I was lying on a bed in a place I did not recognize and I was in excruciating pain. It was a kind of pain I had never experienced before and did not understand. There was a tube down my throat and my body felt incomplete, as if much of it was missing. I came to realize in the hours that followed, the man beating on my back with his fists was a nurse, and he was trying to dislodge some of the fluid that was filling up my lungs as the result of the diving accident I had sustained three days previously, an accident that had fractured my fifth vertebrae and had given me a severe spinal cord injury, an injury that has changed the course of my life forever.

I have no memory of the accident itself. By God's grace, someone spotted me floating face-down in the water and started dragging me to the shore. Had I not been seen, I would have surely died. By God's grace, I was injured on one of the only two days of the year when a group of EMTs gathered less than a mile away for training, so I received prompt medical care for my drowning damage. Had it not been that particular day, help would have been about twenty minutes away and I would have sustained brain damage. And by God's grace there was a field nearby large enough for a rescue helicopter to land and transport me to the University of Maryland Medical Center's Shock Trauma Center, the best unit of its kind in North America. Had I not received the benefit of the best possible care so soon, my recovery would have been unalterably impaired.

Recovery was, and is, hard. It took six weeks to patch me up to a medically stable position suitable enough to transfer me to a rehabilitation center in Washington, D.C. For six weeks in Baltimore, nurses and doctors battled infections and secretions to heal the damage my lungs had suffered from ingesting filthy water. I was placed in a metal halo in an effort to save my fractured vertebrae. And when that effort ultimately failed, I underwent a two-day surgery to replace the damaged vertebrae with a titanium cage. The surgeons also fused my fourth and sixth vertebrates to strengthen my neck. I was intubated, given a tracheotomy, re-intubated, and put back on the tracheotomy. A steady stream of friends and family visited me during this time to lift my spirits and to share tears and smiles. But no one was more faithful than my wife Natalie; she did not leave my side my entire time in the Intensive Care Unit.

A major accident is an invitation to both physical and spiritual recovery. I have never felt God's presence as much as I do since the accident. People will say that accidents like mine should call into question God's mercy or even His existence. But for me, the fact that I survived my injury is the greatest evidence I have ever experienced of God's mercy and providence. I believe God allowed my accident to happen and that He chose to help me survive that accident and every day gives me the opportunity to be blessed through it.

The accident has taught me the essential value defended by the principle of subsidiarity: the value of family and friends as the first line of defense when things go badly. My family and friends have come forward to help my wife and I in ways that have taken our breadth away. They brought us meals, helped pack and move our home, loaned us their cars, contributed their professional advice like how to plan our financial future and cover medical expenses, they have organized prayer groups for us, designed wristbands to help remind people to pray for us and offered us gifts so generous I have had to firmly say no because they are simply too much. The man is never poor or alone who has good friends. My wife and I simply could not gave survived this were it not for our dear family and friends.

The accident has taught me more about the incredible gift of marriage. My father, during his speech at my wedding reception, said the sacrament of marriage gives us the grace to do the impossible. I have met people during these months who think it is incredible, even impossible, that my wife and I survived a trauma like this having been married only three months. I tell them it helps to marry the right woman and get married the right way, the way the Church taught the two of us what marriage is and why it should be honored. People have told us that they are inspired and receive hope from the witness of our marriage – it inspires us too, I respond! We feel it is possible to face anything, even a future of me paralyzed, so long as we cling to each other, to God, and to our marriage vows.

The accident has taught me to be more humble and realistic about my own efforts and contributions. Before my accident I took pride in my self-reliance, and my ability to contribute to the causes I care about, and I still do, but since the accident I have gained a far greater appreciation for the fact that everything I do and am is because of the Lord. I certainly didn't bring myself back from the brink of death and, as a wise priest told me, my prayers and sacrifices these weeks and months have done more to aid the causes of life, marriage and religious freedom than anything I wrote, said or did to promote these prior to the accident.

But make no mistake, as soon as I am able, I am coming back to fight harder than ever for all of these things because I know now that it is prayer that makes the warrior his strongest.

The accident has taught me that I am a work still in progress and anything I do achieve is for God's glory. I completed my term of inpatient rehabilitation this week and the hard work of learning to live on my own again (with the tremendous help of my wife) has just begun, as has grueling outpatient therapy to regain more of the strength and muscle systems I have lost. The vast, vast majority of individuals with my injury never walk again, but there remain signs that I could beat these long odds, and I have been praying to St. Jude for such a miracle. The majority of individuals with an injury like mine never regain the use of their hands - I have had to write these reflections using a knuckle of my right pinky on a touchscreen, if you can believe it. But through the intercession of St. Francis, I am recovering some finger function in my left hand. There are troubling signs that my life will forever be plagued with neuropathic pain, but as I have learned, pain can be offered up and need not inhibit living a good and worthy life. In the coming months, I will be focusing on prayer, reflection and recovery, and then we will know more about what the future holds.

I don't quite remember how it began, but during one of the many sleepless nights spent in the Baltimore ICU, unsure of what that night and the next day would hold, I was inspired by the example of Samuel in the Old Testament, and began quietly saying to God, "Speak, Lord, your servant is listening." This remains my prayer. I do not know what the future holds. But I do know that as long as I have breadth, and with whatever limbs and muscles I can move, I will strive to serve the Lord and do His will. What else is a life for?

You can learn more about my ongoing recovery at tpetersrecovery.blogspot.com.

What It All Means, NOM Marriage News, October 25, 2013

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

This week the battle for marriage in our country has taught us quite a lot about what this fight means for us and for our country. It has also taught us a lot about the meaning of some other things we take for granted.

What Leadership Means

In New Jersey this week, we learned the meaning of leadership — or, rather, its opposite. Governor Chris Christie on Monday abandoned his principles and the people of New Jersey to the whims of an activist Judiciary when he withdrew his administration's appeal to the Supreme Court of a lower ruling that had ordered same-sex 'marriages' to begin in the Garden State.

As I noted in my comments on the decision Monday, "The mark of a leader is to walk a principled walk no matter the difficulty of the path. Chris Christie has failed the test, abandoning both voters and the core institution of society — marriage as the union of one man and one woman."

To be fair, Christie is not responsible for redefining marriage — that was accomplished by an out-of-control judiciary. However, he is responsible for leaving the field of battle and refusing to fight a principled fight when it was most needed. By surrendering, he has guaranteed defeat in the Garden State.

But while this surrender proved to demonstrate what leadership is not, the same day provided a contrasting image of leadership worth celebrating: that, from Pennsylvania's governor, Tom Corbett.

Governor Corbett was pressured following the Christie administration's announcement to follow suit in Pennsylvania and give up the Pennsylvania government's defense of the standing law in that state that defines marriage as between a man and a woman. But Corbett isn't backing down. He said that the case in New Jersey was "no precedent" for what is going on in Pennsylvania and that he would see the case there through the full process of judicial review. Thank you Governor Corbett for demonstrating what it really means to be a leader!

What Privacy Means

Recently I wrote to our California supporters to urge them to support NOM's efforts in California as part of a coalition to defend students' privacy there against a heinous law recently passed which allows any student to use the shower, bathroom or locker room of his or her choice regardless of biological sex!

We are working with the Privacy for All Students coalition supporting a ballot referendum to overturn this dangerous and invasive new law. Certainly students with gender-identity confusion shouldn't be subjected to bullying or discrimination, but California law already protects students from such discrimination and bullying. Rather than protect against bullying, the new law IS bullying! It violates student privacy and security by forcing them to share the most vulnerable areas of school with members of the opposite sex. Imagine being a high school girl forced to undress before the eyes of an opposite-sex peer, and to be told that his so-called "gender identity" entitles him to shower next to you. Worse, if you complain, you might be accused of discrimination against him!

This is an outrageous new law that is terribly conceived and horribly flawed. It just shows you how much the homosexual lobby thinks it can get away with in advancing their agenda.

Please visit www.privacyforallstudents.com today to find out how you can help us ensure every student in California has the right to his or her privacy upheld and protected by the law! If you live in California, please download a petition and return it promptly. And please consider making a contribution to help the campaign be sure they collect the signatures they need.

What Liberal Thought Means

A remarkable essay earlier this month deserves to be read and re-read by every marriage advocate in our country. It is a great resource for engaging in conversation and debate about this issue, whether at home, at school, around the water-cooler at work, or in the public square.

The essay by James Kalb was published in the Catholic World Report on October 2nd and it eviscerates the liberal thinking that has too long dominated our nation's public discourse, and undergirded the Supreme Court's decisions in June against DOMA and Proposition 8:

Liberal thought is entrenched as the basis for public discussion, and it doesn't like the idea of a network of expectations and obligations to which people are subject other than those generated by state and market. What's just, liberals believe, is for individuals to be free from all social pressure in their private lives as long as they perform their duties as employees, taxpayers, and citizens of a diverse, tolerant, and multicultural society. If people are pressured to act one way or another for some reason other than the needs of liberal institutions, that's bigotry and discrimination, and eradicating it is one of the central duties of government.

However strong and entrenched that way of thinking is, it needs to be disputed and overthrown.

Kalb explains what we lose when we trade age-old institutions like marriage, which pre-exist the state, for a modern notion of rights and privileges which the State arbitrarily creates out of thin air:

If marriage is to be something we can rely on, it can't be a sentimental celebration or optional lifestyle choice whose content depends on the orientation and goals of the parties. It has to be understood as something definite that, simply because of what it is, has intrinsic functions that are basic to human life. To be itself, it must therefore be understood as a union of man and woman that accepts the natural consequences of such a union, and there have to be distinct understandings of men, women, the relations between the two, and what they owe and have a right to expect from each other.

Be sure to read the whole wonderful piece today.

What Fatherhood Means

An article in the Washington Times this week revealed growing concern about "irresponsible fatherhood" in our country and lamented that "despite myriad efforts by fatherhood programs, too many men are ending up in multiple relationships, with multiple children from multiple mothers."

What the article failed to mention was that efforts to protect and promote fatherhood are distinctly at odds with the drive to redefine marriage. Because when marriage is redefined, so is the meaning of fatherhood. Rather than the father being a unique and irreplaceable role in the life of a child, a father becomes merely "Spouse 1" or "Spouse 2" — interchangeable and replaceable, an optional role easily replaced in an 'alternative family' model.

But we did have two shining examples of fatherhood this week, of a kind: spiritual fatherhood. Two great pastoral leaders gave shining examples of what it means to care for the 'children' given to one in ministry.

Bishop Thomas J. Paprocki of Springfield, IL responded with a strong press statement to a planned same-sex 'marriage' protest at his Cathedral on Tuesday — part of a larger effort of lobbying by same-sex 'marriage' activists in Illinois who are beginning to see the writing on the wall that gay 'marriage' advocates simply don't have the votes to redefine marriage in this fall session.

In response to plans by a group named the Rainbow Sash Movement to disrupt the Cathedral's religious services on Tuesday, Paprocki announced:

People wearing a rainbow sash or who otherwise identify themselves as affiliated with the Rainbow Sash Movement will not be admitted into the cathedral and anyone who gets up to pray for same-sex marriage in the cathedral will be asked to leave.

Of course, our cathedral and parish churches are always open to everyone who wishes to repent their sins and ask for God's forgiveness.

Meanwhile, in Virginia, another spiritual leader has taken a strong stand in the face of plans to undermine true marriage there.

I've told you before about plans by the Richmond City Council to use a same-sex 'marriage' ordinance as a political power play. Well, the members preparing the ordinance are still at it; and that attracted a strong response from a local pastor, Bishop Daryl Husband, Sr. of Mount Olivet Church in Richmond.

Writing at the blog of the Coalition for African American Pastors, Bishop Husband had this to say about the ordinance:

Today I urge the people of Richmond to stand up to our City Council and tell them that the people of Virginia have already spoken on marriage — loudly and clearly. We believe that this vital institution — the bedrock of our society — is solely the union of a man and a woman. This arrangement has served all civilization well for countless ages, and in our day is the best means we have of ensuring every child the opportunity to have both a mother and father. Tell your Councilmember to scrap this terrible proposal, Ordinance 2013-154, and to stop playing politics and get back to work for the people of Richmond.

Bravo to these brave men for standing up for marriage and leading their congregations to do the same!

What Marriage in America Means

Finally, from Hawaii comes an important reminder of something that we here at NOM have always maintained to be crucial for the fate of marriage in the United States. On this important issue, the people should decide!

A coalition called Let the People Decide, of which NOM is a very proud partner, has begun running some wonderful ads in Hawaii and I want to share one with you today. It's especially touching because it reflects the great cultural heritage and richness of Hawaii which some of us perhaps have experienced in visits to the beautiful state. And thus it reminds us, too, that marriage is a universal value that every heritage and every culture has treasured and honored throughout history. Hawaiians are asking for their right to do the same — and I pray that they are afforded that right!

Thank you for continuing to stand strong for marriage and for our treasured freedoms. It is my honor to stand with you.

National Organization for Marriage Sharply Criticizes Activist Judiciary For Redefining Marriage In New Jersey and Christie For Abandoning Voters

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 21, 2013
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


"An activist judiciary has once again imposed its views and ignored the rights of voters. Regrettably, Governor Christie's decision to surrender on marriage reveals him to be a man who lacks the courage of his supposed convictions." — Brian Brown, NOM president —

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Washington, D.C. — The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) today sharply criticized the courts of New Jersey for orchestrating the redefinition of marriage, and also criticized New Jersey Governor Chris Christie for withdrawing an appeal of the court ruling imposing same-sex marriage and thus abandoning the right of voters to determine the definition of marriage. NOM pledged to continue to fight for the right of New Jerseyans to define marriage, and suggested that Christie's decision will end any chance of him winning the GOP nomination for president.

"There's no question that the courts of New Jersey are responsible for the imposition of same-sex marriage in that state, and we sharply criticize them for redefining our most important social institution with no regard to the wishes of voters or even elected officials," said Brian Brown, NOM's president. "The refusal of the New Jersey Supreme Court to order a stay of the same-sex 'marriage' ruling was wrong, and the latest example of an activist judiciary running amok, substituting their views for those of the people of the state. Still, we are extremely disappointed in Governor Chris Christie for withdrawing the state's appeal of the underlying decision, effectively throwing in the towel on marriage. The mark of a leader is to walk a principled walk no matter the difficulty of the path. Chris Christie has failed the test, abandoning both voters and the core institution of society - marriage as the union of one man and one woman."

A superior court judge had imposed same-sex marriage in New Jersey in a ruling in September, with same-sex 'marriages' set to begin today. Christie's administration appealed the decision and sought a stay to preserve the status-quo until the merit of the case is heard next year. The New Jersey Supreme Court denied the request for the stay, and today Christie dropped his appeal of the underlying decision imposing same-sex marriage.

"It's a sad day for the voters of New Jersey," said Brown. "An activist judiciary has once again imposed its views and ignored the rights of voters. We will continue to fight for the right of New Jersey voters to determine the definition of marriage. Regrettably, Governor Christie's decision to surrender on marriage reveals him to be a man who lacks the courage of his supposed convictions. As far as we are concerned, it's a disqualifying failure. His surrender on marriage effectively surrenders any chance he might have had to secure the GOP nomination for president."

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), eray@crcpublicrelations.com, or Matille Thebolt (x143), mthebolt@crcpublicrelations.com, at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

Statement from the National Organization for Marriage on the New Jersey Supreme Court Decision

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 18, 2013
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


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"It is extremely disappointing that the New Jersey Supreme Court has allowed the ruling of an activist judge to stand pending its appeal through the court system." — Brian Brown, NOM President —

Washington, D.C.—The following should be attributed to Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage (NOM).

 It is extremely disappointing that the New Jersey Supreme Court has allowed the ruling of an activist judge to stand pending its appeal through the court system. The definition of marriage is something that should be decided by the people of New Jersey themselves, not by any judge or court. New Jerseyans should have the right to vote on this issue just as voters in nearly three dozen other states have done. In addition, the decision to allow same-sex ‘marriage’ to proceed even while the law is being tested in court is unfair both to the voters of the state and to same-sex couples themselves. If the state Supreme Court were to uphold marriage as they should do, then the validity of the ‘marriages’ that will be performed starting next week will be called into question. Further, the decision opens the door to a possible federal court ruling similar to what occurred in California in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal which held that once a state grants same-sex ‘marriage’ rights it can never take them away. All in all, today’s ruling is another sad chapter in watching our courts usurp the rights of voters to determine issues like this for themselves.

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), eray@crcpublicrelations.com, or Matille Thebolt (x143), mthebolt@crcpublicrelations.com, at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

 

You Are the Future, NOM Marriage News

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

I want to begin today by sharing with you the video of the panel I participated in last week at the Values Voter Summit on The Future of Marriage with the wonderful Ryan Anderson and Jennifer Marshall from The Heritage Foundation.

The Future of Marriage Begins With YOU

Here's what I had to say about the future of marriage:

This, I believe, is the future of marriage: that if those of us who know the truth about marriage are willing to speak lovingly but boldly the truth that we know in our hearts — that we know through reason, that we know through faith — then ultimately others who in their hearts know this truth... will come back to this truth.

This is written on the human heart — that there's something different about moms and dads, that kids deserve both mothers and fathers — this is written on our hearts. And what we need are people who are willing to stand up — regardless of the names they're called, regardless of the threats that come, regardless of whether supporters of redefining marriage take their 990s and post their names on the internet or whatever else.

What little are we being asked to do! — if we look back at those before us who stood up for the truth, Christians and others through the Civil Rights Movement before! All we're being asked to do is to stand up for the truth... what we know is true in our hearts.... And some of us are never, ever going to be ashamed of that or refuse to stand up to defend it.

This notion was a theme of sorts at the Values Voter Summit: that what we need is for ordinary citizens, individuals like you and I, to stand up bravely and speak the truth without fear or shame.

Jennifer Marshall developed upon the same theme in her response to a question from Tony Perkins. She was asked what she would offer to inspire people to have that courage needed to continue standing up in defense of marriage.

Jennifer drew attention to a joint publication from NOM, The Heritage Foundation, FRC, Focus on the Family, and Alliance Defending Freedom, the booklet What You Need to Know about Marriage:

This is just one example of the kinds of ways that we have been really honing our message and trying to make it accessible for everybody. We did this booklet so that you could take it, digest it, and have these conversations, over the water cooler at work, with your family... we need to really be talking about the case for marriage, and we all need to be equipped with it.

You can get a link to download your own copy of this important resource by visiting this website.

The same theme of citizen activism came up during a Congressional Town Hall at the Summit, when Representative Louie Gohmert (R-Tx.) gave this stirring advice:

What can you do? Listen, folks: if you haven't written a letter to the editor of your local newspaper at least once every six months (and I'd recommend once a month!) then you're not helping like you could. If you're not calling into the newspaper and complaining about leftist articles they've done, and especially opinions they do; if you haven't called your television stations and complained about things, you're not doing what you can do. And when you let your voice be heard, Congress always follows. [...]

The truism has always been consistent, that democracy ensures that people are governed no better than they deserve.... We need to be about deserving better leaders.

Great advice! And I'd encourage everyone to follow it, especially those of you in those states where marriage is currently under attack.

Where Your Voice Needs to be Heard

An article in Crisis Magazine last week by Stephen Beale highlighted just some of the threats to marriage that we're seeing around the nation, and you should really check it out. You might be surprised to find attacks to religious liberty happening right in your backyard in your home state, and think of ways that you might be able to help.

Beale details "at least 11 instances of wedding vendors and venues facing some form of recrimination — threats, boycotts, protests, and the intervention of state or judicial authorities — because they denied services for gay nuptials because of their faith."

He explains clearly how these are linked to the push to redefine marriage:

Such fundamental clashes are linked to the spreading legalization of same-sex marriage. Of the 11 total cases cited above, three occurred within two years of their state legalizing same-sex marriage. A fourth came four years afterwards. Four others were in states that did not have same-sex marriage but had granted some legal recognition to same-sex unions, such as domestic partnerships or civil unions. "When you start recognizing same-sex marriage, these cases are going to start coming up," said Jim Campbell, an Alliance for Defense attorney [sic].

But Beale ends with his own reflection on the future that gives the same spirit of advice we saw coming up time and again at the Values Voter Summit. The advice comes from a Catholic Bishop to his diocese; but it's food for thought for all supporters of marriage in our nation who won't willingly be silenced:

As Christians in the United State wonder on what these cases might mean for them, they would do well to reflect on a letter that a bishop recently issued to his diocese, after losing that state's battle over marriage. The letter is addressed by Bishop Thomas Tobin to Rhode Island Catholics, but his words speak to Christians across the country: "Without a doubt this is a time of challenge, even disappointment for many of us, but it is also an opportunity to be steadfast and courageous, and to renew our commitment to Christ and His Church. As our Lord Jesus Christ told us, ‘In the world you will have trouble, but take courage, I have conquered the world' (Jn 16:33)."

We can welcome this "opportunity to be steadfast and courageous" in various ways, but it starts with being willing to stand up and to defend the truth about marriage without counting the cost.

The Future of Marriage is Bright

It's also good to be reminded that the victory has already been won in the end, because sometimes we see only glimmers of hope and victory for long periods of time when we're in the trenches of these cultural battles. One such glimmer did come this week, though, out of Illinois.

The Illinois Review reports that the proposed bill to redefine marriage in the Land of Lincoln continues to face an uphill battle, and this time because of fundraising shortcomings from those pushing the radical legislation:

Equality Illinois vowed to raise $500,000 to renew the fight this fall. Half of the money was to be earmarked for a "re-education campaign" while the other $250,000 was to fund re-election challenges to lawmakers who would have voted "no" on gay marriage, and to protect those that were planning to vote "yes".

But as David Ormsby reports, despite all the "rhetorical swagger" and "political chest thumping," the organization has fallen far short of its political fundraising goal — raising only $25,421 in the third quarter.

The fact is that the people of Illinois simply do not want marriage redefined and undermined — least of all when the legislature there has so many better things to do with the people's time and resources. It's good to see this fact bearing consequences for the disastrous bill that a noisy minority are still trying to ram through the legislature.

Let's take encouragement where we can, and continue together to stand up bravely for the value of marriage and for the liberties we hold so dear, like freedom of religion and freedom of speech.

The future of marriage is ours to make: what will you do today to ensure that future is bright?

Faithfully,

Brian S. Brown

The National Organization for Marriage Launches Independent Expenditure Campaign In Support Of Steve Lonegan for US Senate in New Jersey

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 12, 2013
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


“Steve Lonegan is a champion for marriage, life and religious liberty.” — Brian Brown, NOM president —

National Organization for Marriage

Washington, D.C. — Today, the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) announced that it is launching an independent expenditure campaign in New Jersey to boost the candidacy of Steve Lonegan in the special election for US Senate set for October 16th.

“Steve Lonegan is a champion for marriage, life and religious liberty and would be a leader in the US Senate for New Jersey families,” said Brian Brown, NOM’s president. “He’s a tenacious campaigner and an even more effective public official. He will get immediately to work to begin to restore the direction of the country.”

NOM has in excess of 120,000 supporters in New Jersey and will organize them to turn out to vote for Lonegan next Wednesday. Lonegan began the campaign 35 points behind, but has worked to make the race close in these final days. With turnout expected to be low, the race should be considered up for grabs.

“Corey Booker expected a coronation, not a close contest,” said Brown. “He’s been busy raising money in Hollywood and among the gay lobby, who’ve lavished money on his campaign because he shares their values. Meanwhile, Steve Lonegan has worked hard to talk about the real issues impacting New Jersey families, and voters are responding. We hope our independent expenditure effort can help propel him over the top.”

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), eray@crcpublicrelations.com, or Matille Thebolt (x143), mthebolt@crcpublicrelations.com, at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

The National Organization for Marriage Files Lawsuit Against The IRS Over Illegal Leak of Organization’s Confidential Tax Return to Marriage Opponents

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 3, 2013
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


“We can prove that NOM’s confidential tax return was released by the IRS and went to our chief political opponent. This is a federal crime.” — Brian Brown, NOM president —

National Organization for Marriage

Washington, D.C. — Today, the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) announced it has filed a lawsuit against the Internal Revenue Service seeking damages over the illegal release of the organization’s 2008 confidential tax return which went to the Human Rights Campaign, America’s leading marriage opponent whose president was a national co-chair for President Obama’s reelection campaign.

“We have irrefutable proof that NOM’s confidential tax return was released by the Internal Revenue Service and went to the number one opponent of marriage, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) whose president was a national co-chair of President Obama’s reelection campaign. The HRC promptly published it and released it to the media,” said Brian Brown, NOM’s president. “This is a federal crime. Worse, the confidential information contained in the illegally leaked documents included the identity of dozens of our major donors and the HRC used this confidential donor information to harass our donors. This is a chilling set of circumstances that should ring alarm bells across the nation.”

The lawsuit, The National Organization for Marriage, Inc. v. The United States of America, Internal Revenue Service was filed in federal district court in the Eastern District of Virginia. NOM is represented by ActRight Legal Foundation, NOM Chairman John Eastman, Cleta Mitchell, of counsel to ActRight Legal Foundation and Jason Torchinsky of Holtzman, Vogel & Josefiak, PLLC.

“There are many emerging examples of how the IRS has targeted conservative groups, but what’s happened with the release of NOM’s confidential tax return to a group that fights marriage at every turn, and which was headed by President Obama’s national reelection campaign co-chair is in a special category of abuse and concern,” said John Eastman, NOM’s Chairman.

“So far the IRS and Obama Administration officials have stonewalled our every attempt to get information or answer basic questions about who knew what inside the IRS and who in the Obama administration had any information or involvement in this crime. Our lawsuit will be a powerful tool in ending the stonewalling and getting the truth to the American people.”

NOM called on the Congress to continue to pressure the IRS, Treasury Department and other officials to disclose what they know about who is responsible for the illegal leaking of NOM’s tax return and confidential donor identity information, which was then published by the Human Rights Campaign.

“The American people are entitled to answers about who at the IRS is responsible for this crime, and whether anyone in the Administration, White House, or Obama Reelection campaign had any information about or involvement in the crime,” said Brown. “We urge Congress to continue to pursue an investigation, including putting the appropriate government and HRC officials under oath and subpoenaing documents to get to the bottom of this matter.”

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), eray@crcpublicrelations.com, or Matille Thebolt (x143), mthebolt@crcpublicrelations.com, at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

"The IRS Needs to Pay" - NOM to File Suit Today

At The Washington Times, Stephen Dinan reports that "The National Organization for Marriage will sue the IRS on Thursday, saying it has evidence that someone within the agency leaked the organization’s private donor list to its political enemies in 2012 but that nobody has been held responsible" [emphasis added].

IRS

Dinan spoke to attorney Cleta Mitchell of ActRight Legal Foundation which is handling NOM's case. She said:

Somebody did this deliberately and it was planned, and we need to know who it was. The IRS needs to pay. Ultimately, the IRS is responsible for the damages.

Dinan also quotes NOM's chairman, Dr. John Eastman, explaining how the fact that the leaked documents had internal IRS markings on that that had been hidden makes for a compelling case:

It suggests to me that this thing was deliberate and at high levels — head of the division, a political appointee, somebody. And darn it, we’re going to find out who did it, and we’re going to wrap it up with a bow and send it over to the Justice Department and keep the pressure on.

You can read Dinan's entire piece here.


And don't forget that you can hear John Eastman and Cleta Mitchell both speaking today at The Heritage Foundation as part of their ongoing series, Preserve the Constitution.

The event will be live-streamed from 12:00pm - 1:00pm EDT, and you can sign up for an email reminder here.

Oh, and the topic of the event? "Political Speech and the IRS: Protecting the First Amendment." Surely, this one is not to be missed!

National Organization for Marriage Denounces New Jersey Superior Court Ruling Redefining Marriage

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 27, 2013
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


“This is another outrageous example of judicial activism. An activist judge has overreached her authority and chosen to impose same-sex ‘marriage’ on the entire state of New Jersey.” — Brian Brown, NOM president —

National Organization for Marriage

Washington, DC — This afternoon the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) denounced today’s ruling by a New Jersey Superior Court judge that purportedly requires the state to redefine marriage to impose same-sex ‘marriage’ on the state.

“This is another outrageous example of judicial activism. An activist judge has overreached her authority and chosen to impose same-sex ‘marriage’ on the entire state of New Jersey,” stated Brian Brown, NOM’s president. “Judge Jacobson has trampled on the right of the people of New Jersey to define marriage, a right that the Supreme Court has upheld in the very case she misuses to redefine marriage.”

The New Jersey state judge applied her own reading of the US Supreme Court’s decision in Windsor v United States to find that the state’s law defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman must be changed. However, the Windsor decision declined to impose same-sex marriage on the nation and instead upheld the right of states to define marriage for themselves.

“This is a gross abuse of power that cannot be allowed to stand,” said Brown. “We urge Governor Chris Christie to appeal this lower court ruling immediately. It’s essential that a single lower court judge not be allowed to impose her own views of marriage on the entire state.”

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), eray@crcpublicrelations.com, or Matille Thebolt (x143), mthebolt@crcpublicrelations.com, at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

National Organization for Marriage California Backs Effort to Repeal Co-ed Bathroom Law

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 20, 2013
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


"AB1266, the co-ed bathroom law, is a horrible attempt by activists to strip society of all gender roles and uses children as a weapon in their culture war." — Brian Brown, NOM president —

National Organization for Marriage

Sacramento, CA — The National Organization for Marriage California (NOM) today announced that it has joined in the fight to repeal California's first-in-the-nation co-ed bathroom law, AB 1266. NOM is urging its members in California to assist in the effort to gather the nearly 505,000 required voter signatures to place the repeal on the November 2014 ballot, suspending the law until Californians can vote to reject it.

"AB1266, the co-ed bathroom law, is a horrible attempt by activists to strip society of all gender roles and uses children as a weapon in their culture war," said Brian Brown, NOM's president. "The National Organization for Marriage fully supports the efforts of the Privacy for All Students coalition to repeal this dangerous law. Opening our most vulnerable areas at school including showers, bathrooms and changing rooms to members of the opposite sex is politically-correct madness that risks the privacy and security of our children and grandchildren."

NOM has long warned that when marriage is redefined, other important social norms are soon destroyed. In June 2013, the United States Supreme Court ruled that the backers of Proposition 8 preserving marriage did not have the legal standing to bring an appeal of a lower court ruling finding traditional marriage laws to be unconstitutional, which resulted in same-sex marriage being imposed on the state in violation of the direct decision of the people themselves.

"Not even two short months after the US Supreme Court refused to uphold the right of over 7 million Californians to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman, the California Legislature passed AB 1266, the school co-ed bathroom law," said Brown. "They are forcing our school children to be exposed in showers and bathrooms to members of the opposite sex who claim a 'gender identity' with that sex. This new law doesn't prevent bullying - it is bullying. It is not about protecting kids; it damages kids."

The Privacy for All Students coalition is attempting to stop the law's implementation by gathering nearly 505,000 voter signatures by early November. The law will then be suspended until the people have the chance to reject it at the general election to be held in November 2014.

"We urge all our supporters to download a petition and to financially support the Privacy For All Students coalition effort," Brown said.

The National Organization for Marriage expects to play a significant role in getting the referendum on the ballot as it did in the Prop 8 campaign in 2008.

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), eray@crcpublicrelations.com, or Matille Thebolt (x143), mthebolt@crcpublicrelations.com, at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

The National Organization for Marriage Endorses the “Marriage and Religious Freedom Act”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 19, 2013
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


“This is a critical piece of legislation to protect religious liberty as a cornerstone of our country. Efforts to redefine marriage pose a direct threat to the free exercise of religion.” — Brian Brown, NOM president —

National Organization for Marriage

Washington, D.C. — Today the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) endorsed the “Marriage and Religious Freedom Act.” Introduced by Congressman Raul Labrador of Idaho, along with 60 co-sponsors, the proposed legislation protects organizations who believe that marriage is the union of one man and one woman from having their tax-exempt status stripped by the IRS.

“This is a critical piece of legislation to protect religious liberty as a cornerstone of our country and deserves our full support,” said Brian Brown, NOM’s president. “Efforts to redefine marriage pose a direct threat to the free exercise of religion. This legislation would protect the right of organizations to communicate their views about marriage without threat that the tax code will be used to punish them. We applaud Congressman Labrador and his colleagues for their leadership on this important issue.”

Rep. Raul Labrador, Rep. Steve Scalise, Chairman of the Republican Study Committee, Rep. Mike McIntyre, Rep. Dan Lipinski, Rep. Joe Pitts, and Rep. John Fleming introduced the landmark bipartisan bill today to protect freedom of conscience on the issue of marriage. Their bill – the Marriage and Religious Freedom Act – would prohibit discrimination through the federal tax code against individuals or institutions that exercise religious conscience regarding marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

“This bill is crucial. Those who wish to redefine marriage would like nothing better than to wield the tax code as a weapon against those who hold a traditional view of marriage. Further, during the IRS hearings before the House Ways and Means Committee we all heard that some legislators would support stripping the tax-exempt status of some groups that support traditional marriage,” continued Brown. “Individuals and groups should be able to freely speak their views about marriage in the public square without fear of governmental reprisal including having their tax exemption stripped. This legislation protects religious freedom and our constitutional rights.”

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), eray@crcpublicrelations.com, or Matille Thebolt (x143), mthebolt@crcpublicrelations.com, at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

The National Organization for Marriage Applauds the Tabling of California Measure Targeting Boy Scouts and Other Traditional Family Groups

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 13, 2013
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


"We're pleased that common sense prevailed in this case. This bill was put forward to punish groups that refused to embrace the radical homosexual agenda including same-sex marriage." — Brian Brown, NOM president —

National Organization for Marriage

Washington, D.C. — The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) applauded the tabling of California legislation (SB323) that would have stripped groups of their tax exemption if their beliefs and practices don't affirm concepts like "gender identity," gay "marriage," and other ideas that fly in the face of the teachings of virtually every faith tradition.

SB 323 was originally aimed at the Boy Scouts, falsely claiming that they engaged in discriminatory practices by supposedly not accepting homosexual members. But the fact is that the bill would have punished any type of group with traditional values, and allowed only liberal groups that affirm the homosexual agenda to enjoy a tax exemption.

"We're pleased that common sense prevailed in this case. This bill was put forward to punish groups that refused to embrace the radical homosexual agenda including same-sex marriage," explained Brian Brown NOM president. "The failed attempt to pass legislation like this is clear proof that one of the first casualties of redefining marriage is our precious religious liberties."

NOM, with many other state and national groups, urged their membership to contact their representatives in opposition to this bill. Nearly 400 emails, letters, and calls were generated directly by the National Organization for Marriage.

"Like the recent victories for marriage in Australia and Pennsylvania, the tabling of this legislation demonstrates that marriage and family champions can be victorious when their voices are clearly heard in the halls of power," continued Brown. "NOM and its allies will continue to build on these victories as we stand for traditional values wherever they are under attack."

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), eray@crcpublicrelations.com, or Matille Thebolt (x143), mthebolt@crcpublicrelations.com, at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

The National Organization for Marriage Applauds Pennsylvania Ruling Upholding the State's Definition of Marriage and Restoring the Rule of Law

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 12, 2013
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


"This is a victory for marriage. We are pleased that Judge Pellegrini reiterated that Pennsylvania law expressly defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman." — Brian Brown, NOM President —

National Organization for Marriage

Washington, DC — The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) applauded the common sense ruling of Judge Pellegrini today when he ruled that county officials do not have the right to ignore Pennsylvania law and its definition of marriage. NOM has maintained from the beginning that the actions of Montgomery County Register Wills D. Bruce Hanes have been nothing less than lawlessness. In 1996, the Pennsylvania Legislature duly enacted a state definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman that no single state or county official can contravene.

"This is a victory for marriage. We are pleased that Judge Pellegrini reiterated that Pennsylvania law expressly defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman," said Brian Brown, NOM President. "The legislature clearly defined marriage in 1996 for Pennsylvania. Now Pennsylvanians should be given the right to vote and to enact a state constitutional amendment so that there will be no further confusion on this issue."

This case could have national implications as similar questions about the roles and responsibilities of local officials have arisen in New Mexico and in other states. Brown also praised Governor Corbett's decisive action to have his administration intervene and stop the lawlessness in Montgomery County.

"The people of Pennsylvania should be grateful to Governor Corbett for his leadership on this issue," continued Brown. "As the chief executive of the state, he properly used his office to uphold the law and stop the potential spread of these rogue actions. Now we ask that he use the influence of his office to have the 'marriage' licenses that were issued declared invalid."

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), eray@crcpublicrelations.com, or Matille Thebolt (x143), mthebolt@crcpublicrelations.com, at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

Like a Stone, NOM Marriage News

NOM National Newsletter

Dear Marriage Supporter,

"Sank Like a Stone" — that's how same-sex marriage faired in Australia this past week.

Australia held elections for Prime Minister the other day, but it was as much a referendum on whether the Aussies would redefine marriage or not. Former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd nailed his hopes of winning to a promise of introducing legislation to redefine marriage within the first 100 days of returning to office.

As was reported, the pro-marriage platform of the former Prime Minister "sank beneath the waves" of the pro-marriage majority down under.

You may remember I had traveled to Australia in August for the World Congress of Families, and I could not be happier for the friends I made on that trip and our pro-marriage and family allies there.

It's a great victory for marriage, and a win worth celebrating across the globe. It also serves as a reminder that when people are given the right to vote on marriage, they invariably vote to preserve the true and intrinsic nature of marriage as an institution binding one man to one woman for life in order to love and care for one another and for any children born of their union.

To cement this great victory, the people of Australia should insist on the right to a national referendum to preserve marriage. That's the best way to capitalize on the momentum of the victory, and only an amendment will protect marriage from the unceasing efforts of gay-'marriage' activists and the politicians who rely on them for support. It's the only way to ensure that the people — and not politicians or judges — control the definition of marriage in Australia.

While Here at Home

Speaking of amendments, here at home we're continuing to work to encourage support for the Federal Marriage Amendment being sponsored by Representative Tim Huelskamp of Kansas. We've written to thousands of marriage supporters across the country urging them to invite their own Representative to become a co-sponsor of the proposed amendment. The resolution now has 52 co-sponsors! NOM will be working with our allies on the Hill and among other organizations to keep the pressure on members of the House to support this important bill.

Meanwhile, marriage faces direct threats in the next two to three months, and we're working hard to meet them.

Hawaii and Illinois will have special legislative sessions where activists will again try to ram through legislation to redefine marriage for the people of those states. We've beaten them before — in Illinois, already once this year — but our opponents have amassed more money from homosexual activists and are turning up the heat. New Jersey, too, will attempt to redefine marriage before the end of the year. These are all tough battles in difficult states, but we're going to give our all to prevail.

But to give our all, we need your help. It's your donations that give us the resources we need to continue fighting across the nation and in the halls of Congress. Your generosity funds our calls, letters and rallies that have been so important in these pitched battles. So, if you can help us with a generous gift today as we prepare for battle in these key states, it would be a blessing. (Remember, every dollar you give will be matched by a very kind donor, and all the funds we receive will be immediately deployed to the front where the battle for marriage is being waged.)

A positive state-level outlook comes from Indiana, where the legislature will likely vote in coming months to put marriage on the ballot for voter approval in 2014. We're working vigorously as part of the growing coalition there to ensure Indiana citizens their right to vote on marriage.

In the courts, challenges to true marriage are being argued across the country, and in the near future we expect decisions to come down in states like Pennsylvania and New Mexico, as well as other states.

With all these court fights and legislative battles in full gear, the next two to three months are crucial to marriage in America. It's why the our $1 million matching gift campaign from now to the end of the year is so important. If you haven't take advantage of this tremendous opportunity, please do so just as soon as you finish reading this newsletter.

Confident in the American People

As I've always told you, I'm confident that if America were to vote on marriage, we would clearly win. Like the people of Australia, we know the importance of marriage for men and women and for our whole society, especially children.

We hear a lot that public opinion is shifting away from marriage in America, but that's simply not the case. One recent Fox News poll showed that 56% of Americans "oppose" redefining marriage: continuing proof that marriage redefinition is not "inevitable."

But even more telling is a Rice University poll that has been given little attention. Our friends at CitizenLink brought this poll to light the other day, publishing an article by Jerry Cox, the president of the Arkansas Family Council.

Cox explains how the poll shows that between 2006 and 2012, "if a person was going to change their mind on the issue of marriage, they were more likely to swing toward opposing same-sex marriage than supporting it."

This poll is particularly interesting, because it interviewed people over time. This allows researchers to measure changes in opinion. And contrary to the myth that support for gay marriage is rapidly gainsing steam, the truth is that it's opposition to gay marriage that is growing.

Of course, the media doesn't want Americans to know this, so they refuse to report it. All we get are stories about the "oppressed minority" and how "equality" is being denied.

Stakes Higher Than You Can Imagine

Despite this, glimmers of the truth do get out — such as the Fox poll and the Rice University study. To make sure that more Americans know about this, we as ordinary Americans need to speak out, and to be heard in the halls of power — such as the state houses of Hawaii, Illinois, and New Jersey. We need to be heard in the courtrooms across the country as well, and we need to be heard in the public squares across the land. NOM is dedicated to helping you have your voice and values heard in all the places of power where the future of marriage is being debated and decided.

We know how much is at stake. Quite literally, the well-being of future generations is at risk. When marriage is redefined, legally or even just 'culturally,' the connection between marriage and children breaks down, and it is the children who pay the price.

One of the most grave consequences of redefining marriage, be it intended or otherwise, is how it leads to other mistakes of definition down the line — for example, mistakes about the definition of parenthood.

Same-sex couples and others are frequently turning down certain technological paths to parenthood which, by definition, deny children of at least one, and very often times both, of their biological parents. In other words, it's becoming more and more a 'new norm' that children are created by design who will be denied their inherent right to know and love their own mom and dad!

Alana Newman has written powerfully about the sense of loss and lack of rights that donor-conceived children feel. Her words are a timely reminder to us, as we blindly follow the urgings of homosexual activists and others in taking step after step into an Orwellian future, that we are creating a whole host of problem for society, and these children in particular.

This madness is certainly not unrelated to cultural urgings toward the deconstruction of marriage. Once we ignore marriage's intrinsic purpose in bringing men and women together to be parents for children, other misunderstandings follow closely behind. Simply put, once marriage falls, parentage falls soon thereafter.

At its core, that's what we must fight against. Marriage is so much more than a private contract and the satisfaction of adults' desires. It is God's design, in His perfect wisdom, for building a healthy society through healthy and whole generations of children.

Let's all be angels here on earth for the cause — speaking the truth in love about marriage, its purpose, its profound good, and its enormous importance to a flourishing society.

Thank you for all you do.

Faithfully,

Brian S. Brown

P.S. Marriage's victory in Australia bought them 2 – 3 years to pass a Constitutional Amendment. But here in the U.S. we only have 2 – 3 MONTHS to protect and promote marriage in Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, and New Jersey. And there's only 3 months left to have your donation doubled by our matching gift program. Please take the time to consider a generous contribution today. Two to three months is all we have.

Across the Nation

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

In the next couple of weeks, NOM will be unveiling a new website, an updated blog, and better news feeds for you to keep informed and equipped in the battle to protect God's ordained definition of marriage. Similarly, we will be reworking the weekly Newsletter as we go through this process.

It's all part of our end of year push to raise $2 million dollars through our matching gift program. To those of you who have already given generously, I say, "Thank you!" Your support is an encouragement to me and the whole team at NOM. If you have not yet been able to take advantage of the $1 million matching gift provided by a generous donor, please consider a sacrificial donation today.

Donate Today

Your sacrificial support allows NOM to defend marriage and all of our religious liberties across the country and in our nation's capitol. Here are a number of opportunities for you to stand for marriage even today.

Marriage Amendment

With Congress returning to work this coming week, now is a good time to write your Representative asking them to sign on as co-sponsor to Rep. Tim Huelskamp's Marriage Amendment. In the long-run we cannot rely on legislators or judges; we must have a federal marriage amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Congressman Huelskamp's proposal already has over 50 co-sponsors, but we need more. Send your Congressman a message today.

New Mexico

Governor Martinez has still not officially intervened to defend marriage and stop the lawlessness that is sweeping across New Mexico. She has repeatedly declared her belief that marriage is the union of a man and a woman, but she has not yet used the power of her office to stop rogue county clerks from issuing illegal marriage 'licenses.' This week New Mexico's counties officially asked the New Mexico Supreme Court for guidance on the issue, while several legislators filed suit to stop county clerks from issuing same-sex 'marriage' licenses. Now is the time for Governor Martinez to step up to defend New Mexico's marriage law. Please use this link to send a message to Governor Martinez urging her use her power as the chief executive officer of the state to intervene and protect marriage.

IRS

Congress is coming back into session next week and we expect answers from them about the IRS scandal. To date NOM has not received any satisfactory explanations, nor has the perpetrator of this felony been identified, never mind charged with his or her crime. Thousands of folks have sent emails to Chairman Camp of the Ways and Means Committee asking that he use his committee's subpoena power to get to the truth. Now is the perfect time to add your voice as he and other members return to the Capitol this week.

Hawaii

The Governor and the Democratic Caucus in Hawaii are deciding even this week about calling a special session of the legislature to vote on redefining marriage in the Aloha State. The Catholic Church has made its voice heard in objection to this, but we need more folks to send email messages to the legislature urging them to reject this proposal. If you live in Hawaii, please take action today. If you know family or friends in Hawaii, please forward this urgent message to them right away. Let your voice be heard.

Every little bit helps, and with thousands of marriage supporters all across the country, we have the power to effect real change...if you and I act today! Thank you so much for everything you do to defend marriage!

Brian S. Brown