10 OCTOBER 2014 — POSTED by SAMUEL B. HISLOP
Religion is an important part of our social fabric and civil society. It calls on us toserve our fellow man, to focus more on family and to contribute to the common good of the community. What’s more, it provides the structure for the inner longing for meaning that many seek in life.
With a recent poll suggesting that religion is losing influence in America, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints knows that it’s more important than ever to strengthen faith’s role and prominence in society. The Church recognizes that this can’t happen without locking arms (as it has done for many, many years) with other faiths. Sure, differences in belief and opinion have and will continue to exist in our pluralistic society, but love for one’s neighbor surpasses these differences.
In that spirit, the Church has partnered with Faith Counts, an organization comprised of faith communities representing over 100 million Americans. Launched this week, its website (FaithCounts.net) includes videos and social media memes aimed at telling powerful stories about how faith inspires, empowers, motivates and comforts billions of people. You can find these stories on the website, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest and Google+. You can also share your own experiences about how faith has influenced your life.
Faith Counts spokeswoman Kerry Troup says she hopes “people who see our work, regardless of what religion they are, will have a better appreciation for the value of faith, feel inspired to share these stories and ultimately feel good about expressing how faith makes them who they are.”
Current Faith Counts partners include:
The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Ad Hoc Committee For Religious Liberty
The Seventh-day Adventist Church
Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Franciscan University of Steubenville
1st Amendment Partnership
Speaking on behalf of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Archbishop William Lori says, “Religious faith is an integral part of our society and needs to be lifted up and celebrated. Faith prompts acts of kindness every day, in every community of our nation. It also connects us to God and to each other as members of the human family. We are so pleased to be a part of Faith Counts, which can make a real difference in the lives of so many.”
Elder Daniel R. Jackson, president of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in North America, notes that “millions of Americans of every religion are motivated by their faith to go and serve the most vulnerable among us. Their gracious acts can be seen in soup kitchens, hospitals, schools, homeless shelters and many other humanitarian causes. Faith Counts will serve as a gentle reminder about these and other positive and meaningful attributes of faith in society.”
The Church’s commitment to look past differences and contribute to the common good is a divinely required, longstanding reality. One of the Church’s Articles of Faith says, “We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may.”
Visit FaithCounts.net for more details.