July 17, 2020
120 U.S. Marine Corps. Reserve JAGs (Judge Advocates General) were scheduled to participate in mandatory annual online training event on July 18, 2020 featuring the presentation of a Gettysburg ‘battle-study’ by Jay Lorenzen of Campus Crusade for Christ (a.k.a. Cru). Reporting on the DailyKos on July 17, 2020, MRFF’s Senior Research Director Chris Rodda detailed Cru’s history of blatant Christian supremacist proselytizing initiatives within the U.S. Military:
According to Campus Crusade for Christ’s Military Ministry, which now goes by the name “Cru,” the first responsibility of a member of the military is to “Know God’s Word,” “The purpose of the military is to administer God’s justice,” and “The soldier is to be a minister of God who administers God’s justice.”
In a Campus Crusade video filmed at the Air Force Academy, a representative of the organization proudly proclaimed that by the time cadets left the Academy, they had been turned into “government-paid missionaries.” A Cru video titled “God and the Military,” which has been in use for years and continues to be used, declares that “If you are in the military, then you are also in the ministry.”
Way back in 2007, MRFF put a halt to Campus Crusade’s “God’s Basic Training,” a Bible study being taught to basic trainees in which these newest members of the military were taught that they were “God’s Ministers” and God’s “angels of wrath,” and were posed for photos wielding their two weapons — their rifles and their Bibles.
A current Marine Reserve JAG Officer contacted former Air Force JAG Officer (and MRFF President/Founder) Mikey Weinstein, on behalf of a number of other Marine Reserve JAG officers similarly impacted by this planned unconstitutional “training”, seeking assistance in ending this overt sectarian Christian proselytizing during this mandatory training event. Mikey immediately contacted Col. Eric R. Kleis via email/phone demanding the cancellation of the Religious “Battle Study” Training by Campus Crusade for Christ staff member and former U.S. Air Force Academy Professor Jay Lorenzen, Lt. Col. (Ret), USAF. 64 minutes later, the following response was received:
On Jul 17, 2020, at 8:21 AM MDT, Kleis Col Eric R wrote:
The issue has been resolved.
From: Michael L Weinstein
Subject: Re: [Non-DoD Source] Clean E-Mail on Jay Lorenzen
Date: July 17, 2020 at 8:31:19 AM MDT
To: Kleis Col Eric R
…thank you SO much, Eric!!…and thx for the phone call, Colonel, we just had confirming that Jay Lorenzen will no longer be speaking at the mandatory Annual Training event for your 120 USMC Reserve JAGs tomorrow morning…..you made the just, rational, correct and Constitutional call here, sir!!……profoundly grateful……Semper Fi……Mikey……
MRFF’s lead client in this matter described Mikey/MRFF’s extremely rapid response to and positive resolution of this matter:
I want to take a moment on behalf of myself and my fellow USMC Reserve JAG’s to thank you for your lightning fast precision support in terminating a mandatory all day religious “Battle Study” of the Gettysburg battle required as part of my USMC Reserve Annual Training.
As you know we contacted you in the early evening of Thursday July 16, 2020 less than 36 hours before the mandatory religious lecture was announced with the “leader” of the battle study, a non-Marine Officer who has spent the last 30 years of his life “crusading” against the American Principles of equality, acceptance, and diversity by being intricately associated with Campus Crusade for Christ and its unconstitutional efforts to convert all military members to its own perverse world view. The speaker for this event openly opposes those principles that we as Marines have fought for worldwide.
The speed, urgency, efficiency, and lethality that you and your MRFF team deployed to expeditiously shut down this unethical un-American proselytizing event was awe inspiring.
Chris Rodda’s DailyKos article on July 17, 2020 succinctly and effectively summarized this quick victory against Cru’s latest shameless and nakedly un-Constitutional attempt at Christian supremacist proselytizing within the U.S. Military:
The Marine Reservist who came to MRFF for help was no defenseless basic trainee like those subjected in 2007 to “God’s Basic Training.” He is a JAG — a lawyer — coming to MRFF on behalf of 120 lawyers.