Coach Joe Kennedy shares morning devotions with the Statesmen Academy and Family Policy Council Alliance after his big win at the Supreme Court in June.
In July, your partnership with Family Policy Alliance’s sister foundation made it possible to host 40 state family policy council leaders and nearly 40 state legislators at the 2022 Statesmen Academy and Family Policy Council Conference. These leaders in your states are committed to making your state safer for children in the womb and their mothers, protecting parental rights, advancing religious freedom and passing pro-family policy.
Based on attendee comments, it was the best yet!
This year’s Statesmen Academy was also the largest event to date with 39 legislators and 18 spouses in attendance. These statesmen joined leaders from nearly 40 state Family Policy Councils and many national allies for a terrific week of training, encouragement, and renewal.
State legislators and leaders gleaned much from Dr. Jeff Myers of Summit Ministries who taught on worldview and how to effectively communicate biblical truth. Dr. Matthew Spalding of Hillsdale College provided a historical perspective on statesmanship and the value of prudence in politics. Statesmen received in-depth media training and time to practice their interview skills with FPA’s communications team. They listened and learned from experienced Christian statesmen, including former Ambassador, Governor, Senator, and Congressman Sam Brownback (R-KS).
A row of state lawmakers listen to engaging and impactful speakers at the 2022 Statesmen Academy.
Of course, no Family Policy Foundation event would be complete without equipping on current pro-family policy issues. This year’s agenda included panels on Help Not Harm legislation to protect minors from “gender transition” drugs and surgeries, pro-life legislation in the After Roe era, and parental rights in education legislation.
For the first time, the prestigious Coburn Statesman Award was given to a Statesmen Academy alumna, Rep. Robin Lundstrum of Arkansas. Rep. Lundstrum is the author of the first-in-the-nation Help Not Harm law and has been a pro-life champion in her home state, carrying more pro-life laws than any other legislator in Arkansas over the past decade. FPF President and CEO Craig DeRoche sat down with Lundstrum just after she received the Coburn Award.
Watch their interview here.
Robin Lundstrum (center) Receives the Coburn Award. Pictured L to R: Jerry Cox – Arkansas Family Council, Tom Lundstrum, Arkansas State Representative Robin Lundstrum, Amanda Banks – Statesmen Academy Director and Craig DeRoche – Family Policy Foundation President and CEO
Participants started each day with worship and devotions. Among those presenting were Dr. Wayne Grudem from Phoenix Seminary and Coach Joe Kennedy who recently won a major religious freedom victory at the Supreme Court after he was fired by his school for praying on the 50-yard line after football games. After perhaps the most pressure-filled and consequential season in the history of the pro-life movement, Christian legislators and leaders relished the opportunity to learn and fellowship together while receiving much-needed refreshment.
One legislator commented that the Academy provided “exactly the equipping this country could use much more of,” and said, “the genuine relationships built with others who share the same heart and beliefs will be lifelong.”
Another statesman remarked that while he “always tried to put God first, it doesn’t always go over well in the political world.” However, he explained, “this week taught me ways to allow Him to shine through when it’s not popular and how to tackle hard issues head-on rather than leave them for someone else to handle.”
Finally, a participant said, “the encouragement from champions of faith and policy is instrumental to our success, and practical help with legislation makes our job easier and achievable.”
These results and the incredible week we shared would not be possible without the generosity of our ministry partners who faithfully give financially and prayerfully to Family Policy Alliance and Family Policy Foundation. We sincerely thank you for your partnership with us!
Director, Statesmen Academy
Vice President, Education
“Political issues.” That phrase tends to have one of two effects. For some, politics sends us running far in the other direction—quickly. For others, we tend to place our hope in our favorite candidates or party—believing they will solve the country’s problems. As believers who first serve God’s Kingdom and who live in a country where we are blessed to be a government of the people, both effects can harm our role as salt and light in America.
As Paul Weber, President & CEO of Family Policy Alliance, says is there any political issue that isn’t first a biblical issue?
Every year, Family Policy Alliance tracks around 2000 bills from every state across the country—and all of them directly impact families, family values, or faith in some way. We sift out and analyze those 2000 from tens of thousands of bills introduced on every topic imaginable each year. God has called us to this work because we know that men and women of faith who are called into other areas of ministry (in the church, in business, in education, and more) don’t have time to figure out which bills matter to families and impact our faith. Yet they still want to be educated and equipped to take action.
But we wonder if you also know that there are men and women in 40 states (someday 50!) who stand on the front lines for you—directly fighting against legislation that harms families and religious freedom, and advancing truth in state capitols. They are called to the ministry of impacting government and “politics”—from a biblical perspective.
We are proud to work and ally with these men and women serving in state family policy councils in 40 states.
This week, we had the privilege to host all of them at once in Georgia to discuss political issues (that are first biblical issues), to strategize, and to encourage one another in our calling to redeem politics and government.
If you have not yet connected with your local family policy council ally, please take this opportunity to do so. The men and women who lead these ministries are at times at your state’s capitol till 3AM monitoring bills and hearings—fighting against bad policies and tirelessly advancing truth. They work to educate and engage the churches in your state so that the believers can restore their role as cultural leaders, shining lights, in your state. And, they work to help identify godly men and women to serve as elected leaders in your state.
Find the ministry that serves your state here and take a moment to sign up for their alerts so that you’ll be notified when the latest prolife policies, or a bad policy that would advance the transgender agenda at the expense of women’s safety and our religious freedom, are happening in your state.
Together, we can see a nation where God is honored, religious freedom flourishes, families thrive, and life is cherished.