Faith Forward for our Democratic Republic

We live in an increasingly divided society.

How can people of faith help our nation heal?

To live well, we need to disagree well.

To disagree well, we need to understand well.

Whatever our beliefs or views, we can all commit to reduce the temperature so that we leave a healthier democratic republic to our children and grandchildren.

What is Faith Forward Democracy?

We are a multifaith, nonpartisan network of faith leaders who are united by our concern for our increasingly divided country and the impact those divisions have on our communities, families, and democracy.

We believe that:

  • Faith can ease divisions that plague our political processes and social fabric.
  • Faith leaders have the power to bridge differences and inspire positive change.

Whatever our beliefs, we know that we share a common commitment to the highest values of peace and love as we strive to live these through our faith.

What Faith Leaders Can Do

  • Expand our skills in having difficult conversations.
  • Learn from the lessons of other communities, near and far.
  • Identify allies to support and expand our actions.
  • Discuss how to move Faith Forward within our communities, in small groups, and in our everyday encounters.
  • Reach out intentionally and courageously to create broader communities of action and understanding.

 

For all of these steps, there are proven TOOLS for action because together:

  • We can have the courage to accept the challenge.
  • We can reach out to our neighbors.
  • We can humanize, not dehumanize.
  • We can move from the path of anger to the path of love.
  • We can embrace difficult conversations.
  • We can listen before we judge.
  • We can reflect on our own weaknesses, not focus on those of others.

“Today our very differences attest to the greatness of our nation. For I can think of no other country on Earth where two political leaders could disagree so widely yet come together in mutual respect. To paraphrase Mr. Jefferson: We are all Democrats, we are all Republicans, because we are all Americans.” 

— Ronald Reagan, at dedication ceremony for The Carter Center, 1986

“The bond of our common humanity is stronger than the divisiveness of our fears and prejudices. God gives us the capacity for choice. We can choose to alleviate suffering. We can choose to work together for peace. We can make these changes — and we must.”

— Jimmy Carter, Nobel Lecture, 2002

Faith Forward Democracy Georgia is a part of the Georgia Democracy Resilience Network, which is supported by The Carter Center.

Upcoming Events

Politics, Polarization, & Peacemaking

Race, Extremism, & Reconciliation: Helping pastors heal the wounds of our divided nation in their churches and communities.

July 25, 2024 – 8.30am – 3.30 pm

On July 25, the American Values Coalition is hosting a day-long conference in Atlanta on Race, Extremism, and Reconciliation at Mercer University. The meeting targets pastors and congregation leaders and will provide tools to help heal the wounds in our divided communities. Speakers include Elizabeth Neumann, Justin Giboney, Troy Jackson, Daniel Bennett, Caleb Campbell, and Phil Herndon.

FLYER Politics, Polarization, & Peacemaking

Registration and additional information here.

Recent Events

Politics, Polarization, and Peacebuilding for Faith Leaders – A Faith Forward Network Webinar with Pastor Caleb Campbell

April 25, 2024 – 1.30 – 2.30 pm

A webinar for pastors who want to faithfully disciple their congregations, staying true to a Christ-centered gospel of love amid increasing political divisions. This conversation helped pastors and ministry leaders confront polarization and toxic division in their churches, communities, and denominations. The content was born out of the successes and failures of pastors and ministry leaders seeking to engage their polarized Christian neighbors with deep love. 

Pastor Campbell is the Lead Pastor at Desert Springs Bible Church, in Phoenix, AZ. He is the founder and director of Disarming Leviathan Ministries which produces a podcast, explainer videos, and training material to equip people to engage divisions with their congregations.

A Service of Prayer for our Nation

February 8, 2024 – 6.30 – 8.00 pm

The Carter Center, Cecil B. Day Chapel

We live in an increasingly divided society. How can people of faith help us to ease these divisions and guide us to more peaceful ground?

We invite you to join senior faith leaders and other community members in Georgia to come together on February 8, 2024 at The Carter Center to pray for our cherished nation, especially as we enter the election year.

We will be reminded of our common responsibilities to God and our neighbors to act with love and kindness to all, as we are each entrusted with the care of our nation, our children, and the generations to come.

The event is organized by Faith Forward Democracy, a multifaith, nonpartisan network of faith leaders and laity in Georgia who are united in concern for our increasingly divided nation and who believe that faith communities can make a positive difference.

Faith Forward Democracy is part of the Georgia Democracy Resilience Network,which is supported by The Carter Center.

Day of Prayer, November 3-5

We offer this prayer and hope you will pray it with your people. If there is another prayer more suitable in your tradition or circumstances, please pray that prayer. We hope you share this message widely.

Sample Prayer: 

Loving and Gracious God, 

We give you thanks for this, our cherished nation that you have entrusted to our care for our children and generations to come. 

We live in a time of disharmony and are troubled by our growing divides.  We pray for the unity and protection of our country in the year ahead.   

Remind us that no matter our beliefs or our views, we are all made in your image, even those with whom we disagree.  Together, let each of us commit to seek harmony and reject division.  Let us be inspired by the better angels of our natures.    

Help us as people of faith to remember our calling to peace and to find the wisdom to make our places of worship into places of healing.  Let us reunite in a common commitment to our shared democratic norms and the rejection of violence. 

Give us the courage to help ourselves and others to the path of respect and love. 

Give us the strength to listen to those with different views so we may better understand their hopes and fears.   

Give us an open heart to find common ground and, where we cannot, to disagree well. 

We pray for our leaders so they may guide us with love and wisdom for the betterment of all. 

These things we ask in the name of all that is holy and good.