William R. Genet first learned about the Baptist Joint Committee in 1980 while reading about James Dunn (the BJC’s executive director at the time) in the Kentucky Baptist state paper. Once he began receiving Report from the Capital, he was hooked and started consistently supporting the BJC.
Genet values the BJC’s role in providing a voice for Baptist concerns in the nation’s capital. “Early Baptists, such as Roger Williams, Isaac Backus and John Leland, championed separation of church and state. The BJC advocates the same message that these early Baptists preached,” he said.
Genet believes that the BJC is unique because it equally emphasizes the First Amendment’s establishment and free exercise clauses. “Some organizations preach that the government should not advance religion and some organizations say that the government should not inhibit religion. The BJC believes that the government should do neither. The government should be neutral,” he said.
Genet relies on Report from the Capital to keep him informed on the latest issues affecting religious liberty, and he also strives to attend BJC-sponsored events in person, including many of the annual Walter B. and Kay W. Shurden Lectures on Religious Liberty and Separation of Church and State.
In addition to his annual financial support, Genet has included the BJC in his estate plans. “As the BJC fights for religious liberty, I want my legacy with them to be that of an encourager. I want the BJC to continue championing a belief that I cherish: the Baptist doctrine that church and state should be separate,” he said.
What would you like your legacy to be with the BJC? Show your commitment to religious freedom by becoming a planned giving donor today. To learn more about making a planned gift to the BJC, please contact Taryn Deaton, director of development, at tdeaton@BJConline.org or 202-544-4226. If you have already included the BJC in your estate plans, please let us know by completing this simple form.