Progressive National Baptist Convention Joins Christian Faith Leaders to Launch "MATTHEW 25 PLEDGE" in Response to Rising Church/State Conflict

PRESS CONFERENCE CALL is on Wednesday, February 22, 2017 at 2:00 PM.
By: Progressive National Baptist Convention
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WASHINGTON - Feb. 22, 2017 - PRLog -- On Wednesday, February 22 at 2:00 p.m. EST, the Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc. (PNBC) will join a group of Christian faith leaders in a telephone press conference call to formally launch a new "Matthew 25 Pledge." The pledge reads simply "I pledge to protect and defend vulnerable people in the name of Jesus" and has grown in response to rising fears among targeted, vulnerable populations including immigrants fearing deportation, people of color facing racial policing, and Muslims confronting rising Islamophobia.

People who sign the pledge will have access to resources, including toolkits, around the three initial issues of immigration, policing, and solidarity with Muslims.  These issues have become flashpoints in a growing confrontation between church and state.

Recent events serve to make the launch of this initiative particularly timely.  A woman in Colorado, Jeannette Vizguerra, recently entered into sanctuary in a Unitarian Church; a woman in Arizona, Guadalupe Garcia de Rayos, was deported unexpectedly; on February 8, ICE agents targeted 8 men outside a hypothermia shelter run by Rising Hope United Methodist Church; and Daniel Ramirez Medina, among the first of the immigrants to obtain Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) from the government, was detained in Seattle.  The Administration's crackdown is causing a church response.

The appointment of Steve Bannon to a senior role in the White House and the confirmation of Jeff Sessions as Attorney General have raised serious doubts about the Trump Administration's commitment to eliminating racial bias in policing. News reports indicate that the Administration will soon be releasing another travel ban that targets Muslim-majority countries as Muslims in America are fearing increased Islamophobia here at home.

Participants in the press conference will include Jim Wallis of Sojourners, Gabe Salguero of the National Latino Evangelical Coalition, Barbara Williams-Skinner of the Skinner Leadership Institute, Noel Castellanos of the Christian Community Development Association, Alexia Salvatierra of the Faith Rooted Organizing UnNetwork, and others. Representing PNBC will be its General Secretary, Dr. Timothy Boddie.

States Dr. Boddie, "The Progressive National Baptist Convention was founded out of the Civil Rights Movement. As we continue the ongoing fight for social justice, liberty, and freedom for ALL humans everywhere, we stand in strong solidarity with Christian faith leaders and the development of Matthew 25 Pledge. In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, who made PNBC his denominational home, 'Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.' We cannot allow fear to be the driving force that dictates the policies of our great nation."

The pledge has been endorsed by a growing list of nearly 100 key faith leaders who have committed to sharing the effort with their networks.

WHO:          Jim Wallis, Sojourners

Gabe Salguero, National Latino Evangelical Coalition

Barbara Williams-Skinner, Skinner Leadership Institute

Noel Castellanos, Christian Community Development Association

Alexia Salvatierra, Faith Rooted Organizing UnNetwork

Timothy Boddie, Progressive National Baptist Convention, and others

WHAT:          Faith Leader "Matthew 25 Pledge" Telephone Press Conference

WHEN:          Wednesday, February 22, 2017

         2:00 – 3:00 EST

HOW:          (712) 775-7031;

         Access Code: 387-007-176

About the PNBC

PNBC is a vital Baptist denomination with an estimated membership of 2.5 million people worldwide. For more information, go to


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