A couple of weeks ago at our first board meeting of 2020, the Wyoming Interfaith Network voted to become an affiliate of the national Interfaith Alliance. It is with great excitement that I get to share this news with you today.
The mission of Interfaith Alliance is to “celebrate religious freedom by championing individual rights, promoting policies that protect both religion and democracy, and unite diverse voices to challenge extremism.” The Interfaith Alliance has been working for 25 years to protect both religion and democracy in America and has members from over 75 different faith traditions. The core beliefs of the Interfaith Alliance are outlined below:
-Religious freedom is a foundation for American democracy.
-Matters of personal conscience must be held sacred, but no one has the right to impose their beliefs on others
-Religious and political extremists are a threat to individual liberty and democracy.
-Religious and cultural diversity is essential to building vibrant communities.
The affiliation means that the Wyoming Interfaith Network is now supported by a national network of like-minded individuals and 16 other affiliates across our country. With our affiliation, we are better equipped to tackle issues related to religious liberty at our legislature, become more inclusive to other faith communities, and become better focused on our mission to seek justice in Wyoming. It does not mean that the Interfaith Alliance gets to dictate what WIN does. We are still autonomous and get to make our own decisions. We are not required to give Interfaith Alliance any money, all that they ask is that a few members of WIN become members of Interfaith Alliance -- a goal that was met prior to our affiliation. At a time when the term religious freedom has become synonymous with discrimination and exclusion, it is vital to protect religious freedom AND counter the misuse of religion to discriminate against others. As we navigate this divided time in our nation’s history, it is important that we find the places and spaces to work together on the issues that matter to us as Wyomingites and Americans. As an affiliate of the Interfaith Alliance, WIN is now better equipped to tackle the issues that matter to our members. I encourage you to read more about the Interfaith Alliance at interfaithalliance.org. Furthermore, if you would like, go ahead and become a member of Interfaith Alliance. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me (Jordan) or Carl Carmichael. In Love and Solidarity,
Jordan Bishop Executive Director