The life of evangelical churches and their spiritual leaders has been portrayed in some recent films and series. Can they help us start conversations?
The regional conference of the Ibero-American Congress for Life and Family responded peacefully to the attacks of gender ideology activists.
On November 23-25, Punta Este (Uruguay) hosted the Ibero-American Congress for Life and Family.
The South American regional conference gathered around 400 people: professionals in the fields of politics, education, social issues, as well evangelical leaders. Together, they reflected about the position of Christian values in the seven South-American countries represented.
Many churches in Uruguay and elsewhere, have expressed its concern over a “wave” of LGBT laws which could restrict religious freedom. This was one of the key issues addressed in the talks during the congress.
Speakers also tackled the human dignity of unborn children, the need to protect religious freedom and how Christian families can be a model in a context of “social deconstruction”.
In a statement summarising the positions of this international think tank, the organisation said that “the family constitutes, without a doubt, the main factor of incidence in the formation of the personality of children, teenagers and youth. From our Christian perspective, the family is of great importance. It is the first social institution, and became the foundation which originated people, cities and our nations”.
THE FIGHT FOR FREEDOM OF SPEECH
Politicians with an evangelical faith also attended the gathering. The Fraternity of Evangelical Parlamentarians agreed to form coalitions of inter-party benchs on national, regional and local political chambers, to defend life and family related policies.
The participants gathered in Uruguay also highlighted the danger of losing the freedom of conscience, religious freedom and freedom of speech. These are “fundamental and absolute human rights”, they said, “which are essential to the human existence”.
Therefore, “we will fight for these freedoms even at the expense of our lives, and leave them as an inheritance to the next generations”.
VANDALISM OF PRO-LGBT RADICALS
The regional Ibero-American Congress for Family and Life in Uruguay was preceded by vandalism against evangelical institutions.
One of the churches that supported the congress in Montevideo was attacked with paintings saying “No to the fascist congress”, as well as satanic symbology and LGBT signs.
The Congress responded by “expressing our clearest repudiation of the acts of violence and intimidation performed by gender ideology activists against the Iglesia Misión Vida and the Uruaguayan Christian Association of Health Professionals”.
“The plurality of voices and expressions, as unalike they may be, have to be heard in an atmosphere of respect, tolerance and in the context of a democratic pluralism”, they added.
EDUCATION MINISTER CALLS EVANGELICALS “PLAGUE”
Also in November, it was known that the Minister of Education of Uruguay had called evangelical churches “a plague that grows”.
According to newspaper El País, the member of the government minister said that in a Whatsapp group. She added: “What concerns me is that we are not able to create an utopia of the new man of the 21st century, and they [evangelical Christians] are close on the heels”.
Repudiamos y exigimos investigación por atentados contra templos y organizaciones que apoyan al Congreso Sudamericano por la Vida y la Familia. Esto es intolerancia y agresión que fomenta el odio. @ConVidayFamilia pic.twitter.com/aYoWVLaSCh
— Gerardo Amarilla (@GerardoAmarilla) 23 de novembre de 2018
This information confirmed the impression of well-known parliamentarian and former President of the Parliament of Uruguay, Gerardo Amarilla, an evangelical Christian. He recently admitted he was concerned about the “witch hunt” in Uruguay against those political representatives who have have a faith.
A VOICE AT INERNATIONAL FORUMS
The Ibero-American Congress for Life and Family has been present at the 2017 and 2018 General Assemblies of the Organisation of American States (OAS). There, this multi-national movement has had chances to share their vision of society and values in the highest Latin American international forum.