Press Release Russell D. Moore inaugurated as eighth president of ERLC By Staff Sep 11, 2013 WASHINGTONJoined by religious leaders and lawmakers, Russell D. Moore was inaugurated as president of the Southern Baptist Conventions Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission Sept. 10 at Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, D.C.Moore will serve as the eighth president of the SBC entity assigned to address social, moral and ethical concerns in the public square following his predecessor Richard D. Land who led the ERLC for 25 years.In his presidential address Moore said, the goal of the Gospel is not a Christian America and he encouraged Christians to be filled with optimism and joy.Moore explained that the Bible Belt is collapsing and to that he said, good riddance. Even still, Moore added, We are not losers in the arc of history, but future kings and queens in Gods Kingdom. As Christians, were not slouching towards Gommorah, but marching toward Zion.In addition to Moore, other religious leaders took part in the service through scripture readings, prayers and charges, including Fred Luter Jr., president of the Southern Baptist Convention; R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary; Robert P. George, McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence at Princeton University; and David Platt, pastor of The Church at Brook Hills.During his address, George said persecution is coming and is indeed here when it comes to issues such as marriage, religious freedom and conscience protection through the health care mandate. He urged Christians to stand up and fight for religious liberty and engage the culture.Also in attendance were Rep. James Lankford, R-Okla.; Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Va.; Melissa Rogers, director of the White House Office of Faith-Based Initiatives and Neighborhood Partnerships; and former Congressman Gene Taylor of Mississippi.The inauguration took place during the annual ERLC trustee meeting.For complete coverage of the inauguration, visit Baptist Press.The Southern Baptist Convention is Americas largest non-Catholic 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.