WASHINGTON, D.C., May 14, 2015The Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention has joined other faith organizations in forming the Faith for Just Lending Coalition. The purpose of the coalition, announced today at a press conference on Capitol Hill, is to raise awareness about families in financial crisis and how high-cost lending negatively impacts them.
Organizational leaders who signed on to the initiative urged churches and faith-based organizations to empower individuals to steward their resources by modeling responsible stewardship. Leaders also encouraged just lending and called for an end to the exploitation of households and families through the payday debt trap.
While the organizations represented differ in practices and doctrinal beliefs, they are unified regarding the fact that just lending is not only an economic issue, it is a matter of human dignity and the biblical command to love ones neighbor.
ERLC President, Russell Moore, commented on the Faith for Just Lending Coalition.
“Payday lending is a form of economic predation and grinds the faces of the poor into the ground. As Christians, we are called by Jesus, by the prophets and by the apostles to care for the poor, individually, and also about the way social and political and corporate structures contribute to the misery of the impoverished. Groups across this diverse coalition don’t agree on every issue in the public square, but I am happy to work together on this issue to stand against unchecked usury and work for economic justice, human dignity and family stability.”
Barrett Duke, ERLC vice president for public policy and research, spoke at a Faith for Just Lending press conference today where he said:
Today our country is awash in payday lenders taking advantage of people in financial distress. Under the guise of offering a helping hand in times of financial emergencies, payday lenders often pile on greater financial burdens than the ones they solve. Since these companies refuse to operate in a responsible manner, government intervention is crucial. We cannot sit by idly while some of the poorest among us are preyed on by people simply looking for a quick buck with no regard for the devastation they cause in the lives of others.
Other Faith for Just Lending Sponsors include:
National Association of Evangelicals
Cooperative Baptist Fellowship
National Baptist Convention USA
National Latino Evangelical Coalition
To learn more about the Faith for Just Lending Coalition, visit lendjustly.com
The Southern Baptist Convention is Americas largest Protestant denomination with more than 15.8 million members in over 46,000 churches nationwide. The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission is the SBCs ethics, religious liberty and public policy agency with offices in Nashville, Tenn., and Washington, D.C.
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