All Maine Matters

January 2006



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The Maine Jeremiah Project

The Maine Jeremiah Project was so named as a reminder of the Biblical principle found in Jeremiah 29:7 “Seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you…and pray to the Lord on its behalf…” Beginning in May of 2005, a group of social conservative individuals and organizations began meeting out of a concern for what they see as the deteriorating state of Maine’s culture, especially as reflected in the actions of state government. They have chosen to examine Scripture, American history and the needs of contemporary society.

Pastor Bob Emrich is one of the founders of the project and has hosted the meetings in Plymouth, giving a central location for the effort. The Jeremiah project website lists three objectives as the primary focus of the group. The objectives are to encourage informed prayer, to provide education regarding Biblical principles and historical precedent, and then to enlist appropriate action to influence public polices.

Progress has been made through the extensive use of email and the new website. Thinking that there is a need to inform people about current legislative and cultural issues, participants in the project have also provided speakers and materials for churches & schools. They have seen a strong interest in hearing a fresh approach regarding Biblical principles and accurate historical perspectives of moral/spiritual issues.

Much of the effort and the time spent at recent meetings has been devoted to encouraging and instructing people in the use of appropriate means to influence public policy. According to Emrich, “the approach is really more historical than novel. We are hoping to restore the confidence of social conservatives and remind them that it is proper for them to join the great debates of the age. We want to dis pel the false notion that people of faith are prohibited from public policy debates,” he added.

The confirmation process for President Bush’s Supreme Court nominees has become a debate over abortion, euthanasia and religious freedom. Maine’s two Republican Senators have been hesitant to show support for the President’s choices for these very reasons. A Maine legislator recently proposed repealing all marriage laws and “same-sex” marriage became the focus of the recent referendum. Pastor Emrich has written that, “the actions of our Senators, coupled with extreme legislative proposals demonstrate the need for ordinary citizens to be aware and active in the political process.” He is convinced that “Christians have been mislead about their role in the influence of public policy. Most of what is commonly believed is clearly inaccurate when measured by Biblical or historical standards.”

There is no plan or desire among the participants to establish a typical lobbying organization with staff and offices. It is more of a grassroots effort designed to educate and equip people to speak for themselves. The Maine Jeremiah Project leaves participants free to participate as they are comfortable without fear of compromising the mission of other organizations.

The Maine Jeremiah Project is co-sponsoring a free conference in March for Ministers throughout the State. The conference is advertised as “A Call To Arms” and will feature nationally acclaimed speaker, Dr. Robert Knight. Dr. Knight is the National Director of Concerned Women for America’s Family and Cultural Institute. The conference will give Ministers the opportunity to explore the best methods to expand cultural influence in Maine.

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