CFNEK Materials

Thank you for allowing me to join you on June 6, 2014. You will find below a copy of my outline, a longer, draft manuscript, as well as copies of the cases cited in our discussion. Speech CFNEK CLE Outline Will the Faithful Have Any Business Beyond the Doors of the ChurchWill the Faithful Have Any Business Beyond the Doors …

Greece wrap-up.

The Supreme Court decided Town of Greece v. Galloway, 12-696 (scotusblog/slip. op.), today. Last year, we authored an “amicus” or “friend of the Court” brief concerning this case for the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention. The ERLC is dedicated to engaging the culture with the gospel of Jesus Christ and speaking to issues in the …

Jonathan Whitehead reacts to Supreme Court’s Decision on Prayer at Government Meetings

For Immediate Release Contact: Jonathan Whitehead, 816.398.8305, jon@whiteheadlawllc.com Local Attorneys React to Supreme Court’s Decision on Prayer at Government Meetings LEE’S SUMMIT, Mo., May 5, 2014 Two local attorneys who filed a brief for the Southern Baptist Convention applauded the decision by the Supreme Court on Monday in the case of Town of Greece v. Galloway. The 5-4 decision written …

Legal Issues surrounding Church Discipline

If you’re considering removing or expelling a church member, you should consult an attorney. Here’s why: careless removal can draw lawsuits. Courts have held churches and individuals liable for defamation, and other legal wrongs, related to the process of church discipline. a discipline revival Churches can admit and remove members. But in the past few decades, actual removal became rare. …

Should churches use Robert’s Rules?

There’s an old joke that some churches believe Robert’s Rules of Order is the third testament. But, I can tell you that the worst church fights happen when the rules seem unfair. When people lose a fair process, they are disappointed. But when people feel they’ve lost at an unfair process, they become angry. If the decision is important, it …

How to Write Church Bylaws

“Bylaws” can be confusing. The “bylaws” might be the controlling legal document for a church. Or it could be a second or third-level document. Our ‘model’ for governing documents is below; if you’d like efficient and affordable advice about drafting documents, please call us at 1.816.398.3805. First Layer – Articles The top layer of documents for an incorporated church in …

4 Points in Favor of the Ministerial Housing Allowance

I will blog a lot more about the decision in Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc. v. Lew, (W.D. WI Nov. 22, 2013), which declared Section 107(2) of the Internal Revenue Code an unconstitutional establishment of religion. But here are four points lost in much of the coverage I am reading: Housing Allowance isn’t limited to ministers. Section 107(2) is a …

What does history tell us about legislative prayer?

I had the privilege of attending the November 6 arguments in Town of Greece v. Galloway. It was a lively argument. But the key question, it seems, came just a few minutes into the presentation, when Justice Kennedy asked a question about the value of history. The case was about prayer before legislative meetings, which was affirmed in 1983’s Marsh …

Media coverage of ERLC amicus brief

Other media coverage of the amicus brief [friend-of-the-court brief] drafted by Jonathan R. Whitehead and Michael Whitehead for the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission. Our ERLC amicus brief filed with the Supreme Court Friday, on religious liberty for public voluntary… http://t.co/YB9BJR9TU3 — Russell Moore (@drmoore) August 4, 2013 @DRMoore (twitter): Our ERLC amicus brief filed with the …

Baptist Press: Prayers at city meetings supported in ERLC brief

Baptist Press reports on the amicus brief drafted by Michael Whitehead and Jonathan Whitehead for the SBC’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission. WASHINGTON (BP) — The Southern Baptist Convention’s religious freedom entity has urged the Supreme Court to protect prayers before legislative meetings and thereby prevent judges from becoming theological referees….