Don't Let It Happen Here...

Oct 16, 2020

Former victims of Communist Romanian persecution are petitioning the U.S. Supreme Court. They are saying, "don't let happen here what happened in Romania!" Read on to learn about our latest filing at the High Court. -Mat

Thirty years after the "Socialist Republic of Romania" collapsed, former victims of Iron Curtain tyranny are pleading with the U.S. Supreme Court to stop their past history from repeating itself here in the U.S.A.

During the Romanian Socialists' reign, over 5,000 Christian pastors were imprisoned for the crime of holding church and over 2,000 churches were seized for refusing to obey the Romanian government's edicts.

Now, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker and Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot are repeating Romania's persecution of Christians – and some of the same pastors who suffered under the brutal Romanian regime are dragging Gov. Pritzker to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Earlier this year, Pritzker laid down a series of illegal and unconstitutional edicts against people of faith. Pastors, churches and congregants were ordered to discard important elements of their religious practices in favor of the governor's edicts – namely the prohibition of having more than 10 Christians in a church at any one time.

Never mind that religious freedom is guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution (interestingly, it was "guaranteed" in Romania's socialist constitution as well) -- Pritzker did not care.

When the pastors and congregations of our clients, Elim Romanian Pentecostal Church and Logos Baptist Ministries, reopened their churches with more than 10 people, Pritzker and Lightfoot turned up the heat.

Every car parked on the streets for nine blocks around Elim's Chicago church was towed. These weren't churchgoers' cars, they belonged to the hard-working families living near the church. This is similar to the way in which Romanian Dictator Nicolae Ceausescu punished the entire village surrounding a church. Illinois punished Elim's neighbors in an attempt to turn the neighbors against the church. It didn't work.

Then, government officials sent five marked police cars to block every entrance to Elim's privately leased parking lot. Like Ceausescu and his Securitate, Illinois sent the police to deliver a very clear message - "stay away...or else."

Still, Elim's pastor and congregation refused to stop gathering in our Lord's name. So, Pritzker's bureaucrats turned the heat up once more.

Taking a page out of Dictator Ceausescu's book of abuses, the City of Chicago threatened to seize and destroy Elim's beautiful church because Pastor Ionescu and the congregation refused to obey Gov. Pritzker's illegal and unconstitutional 10-person limit.

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But Elim Romanian Pentecostal Church had a champion, one that had suffered right along with them in Romania.

Horatio "Harry" Mihet grew up in Romania during Nicolae Ceausescu’s bloody reign that reportedly killed 60,000 people, mainly Christians. He remembers all too well the extreme danger he and his parents faced for helping smuggle Bibles into Romania.

On December 25, 1989, young Harry experienced freedom for the first time in his life as a 12-year old pastor's son. In 1990, the family arrived in the U.S. Here he determined to defend religious freedom, albeit not in a pulpit but in a courtroom – by becoming a top-notch lawyer specializing in preserving religious freedom.

Horatio "Harry" Mihet – the boy who helped his father hide Bibles from Ceausescu’s secret police – grew up to become Liberty Counsel's Vice President of Legal Affairs and Chief Litigation Counsel.

Liberty Counsel has now filed with the Supreme Court of the United States, asking for a full review of Gov. Pritzker's illegal and unconstitutional actions against the Romanian immigrant churches. This case will be the FIRST church case in the nation to go before the Supreme Court for a full review.

How appropriate that the very first church restrictions case to go before the Supreme Court should be brought by those who suffered firsthand under Communism! God will use unlikely people to accomplish His purpose.

This case is certainly among the most important cases Liberty Counsel has ever fought because a Supreme Court ruling would determine whether religious freedom will remain FREE in America.

Should this case go the wrong way, Ceausescu-like socialist tyrants in the United States will be able to shutter churches and silence Christians any time they please.

America's religious freedom is on the line and we cannot afford to lose.

PLEASE, take advantage of the generous challenge grant that has been established to DOUBLE THE IMPACT OF YOUR DONATION. No donation is too small! And it will take everything we can muster to win this mighty battle. Please, give generously TODAY. Select here or the button below.


Mat Staver
Founder & Chairman

P.S. As I mentioned above, a generous supporter has established a CHALLENGE GRANT which will effectively DOUBLE the impact of your donation today. Please don't let this opportunity to DOUBLE your effective support pass you by. America's pastors and churches are relying on YOU, a faithful Liberty Counsel supporter, to help ensure religious freedom remains FREE!

P.P.S. Our church cases coming before the Supreme Court illustrate just how incredibly important it is to have a constitutional textualist on the bench.  Considering the sheer number of abuses of Christians' religious rights taking place right now in America, we MUST ensure Judge Amy Coney Barrett is confirmed and seated on the U.S. Supreme Court. PLEASE – FAX THE SENATE NOW – DEMAND JUDGE BARRETT BE CONFIRMED AS SOON AS POSSIBLE!