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How does the ERLC advocate for Southern Baptists in Washington, D.C.?

The ERLC team in Washington, D.C. advocates for public policy on behalf of more than 15.2 million Southern Baptists. The SBC is America’s largest Protestant denomination with more than 46,000 churches nationwide. The ERLC serves as a voice from our churches to government leaders and policy makers by applying a biblical ethic and gospel-centered worldview to the issues of our day. The ERLC’s office on Capitol Hill is named the Leland House, honoring John Leland, a Baptist preacher and advocate for religious liberty in America’s founding era.

We speak to what the gospel demands of us

We are non-partisan. We engage issues where we believe the Bible commands and when Southern Baptists speak. Our advocacy motivation is to bring a moral weight and Christian vision to the issues. We advocate from the Biblical convictions we share with our people in local churches, not partisan affiliation or political means. It is paramount for our mission in the public square that we advocate for issues central to the gospel.

We advocate for life

We navigate complex issues related to human dignity because every person is an image bearer of God. Our pro-life ethic colors all our policy views, beginning with steadfast protection of the most vulnerable among us, the unborn.

We advocate for religious liberty

We promote religious liberty as a biblical teaching because God alone is Lord of the conscience. We stand with our Baptists forefathers in defending the free exercise of faith for all people.

We believe courage and civility matter

The divisions growing in our nation’s in recent years has deepened our political dysfunction and threatened the foundations of our democractic republic. Faith and healthy democracy matter for our public policy work. For example, laws that protect the preborn are of little utility without a robust respect for the rule of law, even and especially those laws and processes that form the essence of our democracy. And so, in this time of upheaval, we are also focused on the health of our public square—cultivating convictional kindness, working for depolarization, and developing leaders who love those whom they lead enough to speak the truth and guide them down a better path. 

We work in Washington with joy, even when there is much cause for lament because our mission is not defined by cultural values or voting patterns. Our mission is defined by a person: Jesus Christ.

We proclaim the good news that Christ is King in Washington, D.C., as advocates to the United States government with that theological vision.

How can you get involved with our mission to the public square?

  • Pray for the church to have an increased faith in Christ’s Kingdom during this era of national tumult.
  • Get involved at a local level by volunteering at a Pregnancy Resource Center, a Refugee resettlement center, or by engaging with your federal, state, or local elected office holders.
  • Subscribe to our Policy Updates so that you can be informed and aware of the policy work we are doing on behalf of Southern Baptists like you.