March 21, 2012
Dear Pro-Life Friend,
I write with information about the “Rallies for Religious Freedom” taking place in cities around the country-including in Omaha and Lincoln-this Friday, March 23rd, from noon to 1:00 pm. These rallies are being organized by a national coalition of pro-life and religious organizations called “Stand Up For Religious Freedom”.
The reason I haven’t sent out information on these rallies sooner is that, until just recently, I was unable to get information from the Coalition about who the local organizers are in Lincoln and Omaha. So here is what I know:
Omaha: A rally with a more formal program, speakers, etc. is being sponsored by Nebraskans United for Life, the Respect Life Office of the Archdiocese and Spirit Catholic Radio. Archbishop George Lucas, Fr. Damien Cook and I will be participating in this rally. See the attached flier for more details.
Lincoln: There is no local organizer so there won’t be a formal rally. However, those wishing to participate can come to the Federal Building in Lincoln and hold a religious freedom sign from noon to 1:00 pm. The Federal Building is on the north side of ‘O’ Street between Centennial Mall and 16th St. Participants should stand along ‘O’ Street (south side of building) and 16th Street (east side) to get the most visibility from traffic. Jack Odgaard will be on the southwest corner of building (O St and Centennial Mall) with a handful of signs that say: “Stop Obama’s HHS Mandate” and “Stand Up for Religious Freedom“. Since there are only a small number (15) of these signs provided by the national coalition, please consider making your own sign with one of those messages.
Keep in mind that the subject of these rallies is religious freedom, not contraception or abortion or any other practice/issue. See the Rally guidelines below.
Come if you can and make a public witness for religious freedom!!
Bishops’ Pastoral Plan for Pro Life Activities
Nebraska Catholic Conference
The Nationwide Rally for Religious Freedom welcomes all participants, of whatever religious persuasion-and even those of no religious faith-who are united by support for and desire to protect the United States Constitution’s First Amendment right of religious liberty currently under attack by the HHS Mandate.
It is not the purpose of these Rallies to promote or advocate for any political party or political movement. Thus Rally participants are asked to not bring political party or candidate signage to the rallies or distribute such literature.
All those who attend are expected to comport themselves peacefully at all times while asserting their Constitutional right to freedom of assembly.
Families, even those with small children, should feel at home and comfortable attending this Rally. If opposition protests are conducted, Rally participants will not engage counter demonstrators or hecklers with loud verbal argumentation, name-calling or derogatory remarks, nor will such opponents be physically engaged in any way.
Any interference with Rally participants’ rights to freedom of speech and assembly will be referred to police authorities by local Rally leaders.
If Rally participants are approached by media for comment, they should refer reporters and journalists to local rally coordinators for an interview.