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Not Our Faith! Clergy Hand Out Condoms at Hobby Lobby to Protest Store’s Religious Claims

A group of clergy handed out condoms in front of an Illinois Hobby Lobby on Wednesday to make it clear – Hobby Lobby does not speak for all people of faith.

“I’m just hoping that (people who see the demonstration) realize that this opinion (of Hobby Lobby’s owners) is not the opinion of religious people as a broad spectrum, but that religious people have many different opinions,” Rev. Emmy Lou Belcher, an Unitarian minister told the local news.

They also wanted to draw attention to the fact that, for many Christians, denying other people birth control is not about living out your own religious freedom but demonstrating your power over others.

“You can make the religious freedom argument, you can make the argument about contraception, but ultimately, for me, this is about power,” Rev. Mark Winters, a United Church of Christ minister said. “Jesus had a lot of issues with powerful people using power over the powerless.”

The protest, which started by a local United Church of Christ (UCC) minister in Aurora, Illinois, gathered together clergy and representatives from the UCC, the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), and Planned Parenthood.

It is also part of a growing wave of Christians who want people to know that even though Hobby Lobby’s owners claim they are acting on the basis of their Christian belief, that does not mean they agree with the Supreme Court’s ruling or Hobby Lobby’s religious stance, especially when it comes to giving corporations religious rights.

“There are many of us Baptists, as well as other Christians, who believe that religious liberty rights are something inviolable for individuals and not for corporations,” Dr. Bruce Powell, who led a protest in Oklahoma City at Hobby Lobby hours after the decision, told News Channel 4. “The right of religious liberty is a fundamental human right. Corporations are legal constructs. They are not human beings.”

Photo Credit: Nicholas Eckhart

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Tamar is a New York based freelance writer and photographer whose work has appeared in over 15 publications. You can catch her work regularly on Issue Hawk, Latest, Jspace, and MediaGlobal.