In the roadmap of today’s church landscape, biblical faith and civil law are intersecting more and more. In 2014 alone, numerous legal matters found their way into sermons from pulpits around the country and started conversations among churchgoers across the nation.
The Hobby Lobby Supreme Court case, the subpoena of five pastors in Houston, and the ousting or targeting of several professionals for their Christian beliefs are just a few examples of how religion and law are colliding.
The Pennsylvania Pastors Network (PPN, www.papastors.net) has invited legal expert Jeff Mateer of the Liberty Institute to the upcoming 2015 conference, titled, “U-Turn: A Roadmap for Renewal—A Conversation with Pastors on Society, Culture and Leadership,” which will equip attendees to “stand in the gap for truth.” The event is set for March 19 at Lancaster Bible College.
“As our biblically based constitutional rights are increasingly attacked, defending religious freedom and Christian beliefs in our society has unfortunately become the norm rather than the exception,” said PPN President Sam Rohrer, who is also President of the American Pastors Network (APN, www.AmericanPastorsNetwork.net). “We are looking forward to having Jeff Mateer of the Liberty Institute join us for the upcoming ‘U-Turn’ conference to share his legal expertise and update pastors, church leaders and all attendees on the truth regarding our God-given and constitutionally protected freedoms.”
Mateer is General Counsel for Liberty Institute, which he joined in 2010 after 19 years in private litigation practice. He now oversees and directs Liberty Institute’s legal team and specializes in religious liberty matters, including free exercise, free speech, the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA) and public acknowledgment of religion cases.
Mateer has represented clients ranging from large international organizations to local businesses, schools, ministries, churches and individuals in complex federal and state court actions involving religious liberty, civil rights, employment, intellectual property and business matters. In private practice, his clients included the National Collegiate Athletic Association, Citigroup, CNA, ConAgra Foods, former officers and directors of EDS, Ford Motor Company, Pilgrim’s Pride and PNC Bank. He has tried numerous jury and bench trials in both federal and state courts, and has successfully argued before the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and Texas appellate courts.
The powerful one-day “U-Turn” conference is open to pastors, leaders and laypeople and is specifically designed to answer questions about society, culture and leadership, with a focus on how cultural trends can be strategically impacted with the truths of God’s Word.
Headlining speakers at the “U-Turn” conference are social science researcher George Barna, founder of the Barna Research Group, and historian David Barton of WallBuilders. Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who recently left his Fox News television program for a possible run at the U.S. Presidency in 2016, will record a special video message to be shown at the event.
Other confirmed speakers for PPN’s “U-Turn” conference include: author Steve Scheibner, Gary Dull of the American Pastors Network, Sandy Rios of the American Family Association and American Family Radio, Paul Blair of Reclaiming America for Christ, and Ralph Drollinger of Capitol Ministries, who will speak on PPN’s Ministers Together project, an initiative which brings together pastors and elected officials on a biblical rather than political basis.
All sessions will be held on Thursday, March 19, at Lancaster Bible College’s Good Shepherd Chapel from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Early bird tickets are available for $29 through Feb. 25. For more information on the conference or to register, visit www.UTurnConference.org.