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STRENGTHENING AMERICA'S COMMUNITIES:
EXAMINING THE IMPACT OF FAITH
BASED HOUSING PARTNERSHIPS
Tuesday, March 25, 2003
U.S. House of Representatives,
Subcommittee on Housing and Community Opportunity,
Committee on Financial Services,
The subcommittee met, pursuant to call, at 3:04 p.m., in Room 2128, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Robert Ney [chairman of the subcommittee] presiding.
Present: Representatives Ney, Green, Waters, Watt, Clay, Miller, Scott, Davis, and Frank (ex officio).
Mr. NEY. [Presiding.] Good afternoon. The Subcommittee on Housing and Community Opportunity will come to order. I want to welcome members of the committee that are hereour Ranking Member Ms. Waters, Mr. Frank and Mr. Green.
Today's hearing is about the Department of Housing and Urban Development's January 6, 2003 proposed regulation that intended to provide more opportunities for faith-based organizations to assist in meeting the needs of the poor and distressed neighborhoods. Today, there are hundreds of faith-based organizations helping the homeless, providing decent affordable housing, and critical services for our nation's homeless seniors and disabled.
As President Bush said when he announced his faith-based initiative, government has a solemn responsibility to help meet the needs of poor Americans and distressed neighborhoods, but it does not have a monopoly on compassion. In 1996, Congress enacted charitable choice legislation that sought to expand the involvement of religious organizations in social service programs. In January, 2001, President Bush issued two executive orders to create a White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, and five centers for Faith-Based and Community Initiatives in five Federal agencies.
Page 2 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Most recently, on December 12, 2002, the Administration announced several additional administrative measures to enhance its faith-based initiative administratively. In a limited way, faith-based organizations currently are allowed to participate in various Federal programs. However, the current regulations present a roadblock to full participation by faith-based organizations, hindering their ability to help those in need. The House-proposed rule would remove some of the barriers faith-based organizations now encounter when trying to participate in helping provide important programs. The new HUD regulations would modify requirements for eight specific programs: housing opportunities for people with AIDS, emergency shelters grants, shelter-plus care, the supportive housing program, HOPE III, HOME, and CDBG.
I want to point out that Ohio has been among the states that have led the way in supporting charitable choice programs. In 2002, the Bliss Institute at the University of Akron and the Hudson Institute in Virginia jointly prepared a survey of government-funded faith-based programs in 15 states. The report notes that Ohio, California, Michigan and Texas lead the way in terms of dollars invested, while Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin hold the most contracts.
The committee has invited a broad cross-section of representatives from faith-based organizations who have experience providing social services. I think that everyone here shares the intent of HUD in crafting this regulation, which is ensuring the delivery of Federally funded services to very low and low-income people. While we all may agree on that goal, there are certainly different views on how to achieve it.
Our witnesses today are here to share their experiences providing social services, as well as their views on whether or not the proposed rule will make the Federal funds more accessible to organizations such as theirs, and if not, what can be done to improve the proposal. I look forward to hearing from our witnesses. I want to take a moment to recognize that because of the diversity of faith-based organizations that flourish under our Constitution's protection, we were unable to accommodate every group that wanted to come and testify today.
Page 3 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Without objection, members will be allowed to submit their written statements for the record. Hearing no objection, they will be submitted for the record.
I yield to our ranking member, Ms. Waters, for her opening statement.
Ms. WATERS. Thank you very much, Chairman Ney.
I would like to thank you and, of course, our own ranking member, Congressman Barney Frank, for agreeing to have this very special and important hearing. I would like to also thank all of our witnesses who have come today. I know that most of them are extremely busy and the fact that they have given up their time to be with us is certainly appreciated by me and other members of this committee.
This hearing is extremely important for any number of reasons. The HUD, Department of Housing and Urban Development, is proposing new regulations to deal with the President's executive order relative to his faith-based initiative. The President has come up with a faith-based initiative because the President obviously believes that somehow our religious organizations are able to provide services to the communities that need it. What is interesting about the President's initiative is it does nothing to allow faith-based organizations to provide services to the community other than allow them to discriminate. Faith-based organizations can already, under 501(c)(3) operations where you separate the money that comes from the Federal government into the 501(c)(3) corporation, rather than mixing the money in the collection plate. They can already under 501(c)(3)s provide any services that the Federal government funds, that they allow to go to organizations that provide these kinds of services.
Some of us are extremely concerned because the President's executive order absolutely violates Title VII and it flies in the face of President Johnson's executive order, which further supported Title VII in saying that if you receive Federal money, if you receive government money, you may not discriminate. This initiative by the President suggests that somehow religious organizations should be able to pick and choose who they hire. If they do not like somebody's skin color, if they do not like their gender, if they do not like the other organizations they are associated with, if they do not like the communities they live inwhateverthey would be allowed to undermine all of the civil rights work that many of our people have died for, to make sure that we do not have discrimination and the Federal government resources.
Page 4 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Further, the President has put no new money out there for this initiative. The Federal government would open up even further, even though it can be done now, the opportunity for our faith-based organizations to compete for CDBG monies. That is, the money that goes from the Federal government to the cities, the Community Development Block Grant monies that area already being used by many of the community organizations throughout the country. Faith-based organizations would be in competition with these organizations, with the ability to discriminate. Faith-based organizations can already apply for CDBG monies. I know because I assist faith-based organizations in applying for money to do everything from build senior citizens' housing to have child daycare programs.
And so this would simply do two things or three: number one, open up the ability to discriminate, which some of us are adamantly opposed to, we have worked too hard, we have fought too long to open up the ability to discriminate; and it would allow for a kind of proselytizing where you could have all kinds of religious symbols and relics et cetera, et cetera, and perhaps even discriminate against one religious organization against another.
Unanimous consent for one additional minute.
I noted in my research on this that I think it was Pat Robertson who said, he did not like the faith-based initiative because he did not think some religious organizations were Christian enough and they did not deserve to be funded. We have another ex-member of Congress, Mr. Bob Barr, who pointed out a religious organization that he did not like. He said they should not be allowed on military bases. So you open up the whole discussion of what is and what is not a good religious organization; what is an acceptable religious organization. Is it all right for the AMEs as opposed to the Pentecostals? Do they worship Christ the way we want them to? I do not think we want that kind of government involvement in religion.
Finally, let me say this. There are some religious organizations now that are under investigation. Even with the walls that we have built up requiring that the 501(c)(3)s be used in order to operate programs, they have gotten into trouble because they mixed the money from the 501(c)(3) with the collection plate money. I daresay to you that many ministers who do not have the infrastructure, they do not have the grantsmanship capability, they do not have the assistance to go after this money and to implement these programs. They are opening themselves up for indictment by the very people who are telling you that they want you to get into this business in a certain kind of way. I would submit to you that the government needs to keep its hands out of the church, and the government needs to make sure that there is a wall that separates the 501(c)(3) from the collection plate. Every minister who cares about their ability to do what they want to do in practicing their religion should be opposed to this faith-based initiative.
Page 5 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 With that, I yield back the balance of my time, and I thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. NEY. The chair recognizes the gentleman from Wisconsin, Mr. Green.
Mr. GREEN. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I appreciate your leadership in holding this hearing. I have, as you might gather, a very different approach than the last speaker.
I think we need to recognize that government and faith-based organizations share many of the same objectives. At their best, all strive to help the less fortunate, both work to strengthen our communities, and both obviously try to make a better future for families. I have always supported the idea of returning to the charitable ideas that built Americalocal organizations, staffed by local people working on the ground to serve and solve local problems.
We in government can do everything in our power to foster a healthy environment for community renewal. We can pass laws. We can implement all kinds of programs and services. We can and we should plow more funds into these areas. In the short term, our efforts will do some good, but there can be no real, long-lasting community renewal unless we succeed in reviving the spirit of individuals, families and neighborhoods. That is something that government cannot do. That takes the hard work of individuals and local organizations like the faith-based groups that are represented here today.
Each year in America, we spend billions of dollars providing social services. It just makes sense that we find the most effective way to deliver those services to the folks who really need them, whether that is through government or whether on some occasions that may be through private groups. Government should not and cannot retreat from its critical poverty relief mission, but at least in some cases, local faith-based organizations can do that mission more effectively than the Federal government, lift more lives and save more streets.
Page 6 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 At one time, faith-based organizations were at the core of efforts to improve our communities. They were very effective and have a proven record of success. Gradually, they have been pushed aside by big government, which has all too often proven to be a far less helpful alternative. The pendulum is just now beginning to swing back, as charitable choice is implemented. Under the leadership of then-Governor Tommy G. Thompson of Wisconsin, Wisconsin was one of the leaders in implementing charitable choice initiatives. HUD's proposal follows President Bush's executive order to give faith-based organizations more opportunities to provide these services for the sake of the people they help and for the future of our communities.
I look forward to hearing from today's witnesses about their experiences in the community and with government, and how we can ensure their continued participation in providing services to those who are most in need.
Finally, I am particularly honored to have Bishop Daniels of Milwaukee's Holy Redeemer Church of God in Christ here today to describe the profoundly beneficial impact his congregation and its affiliated entities have had on the largest city in my home State of Wisconsin. I have had the pleasure of meeting Bishop Daniels, most recently last July when President Bush visited the Holy Redeemer congregation to see first-hand what great work they are doing. Holy Redeemer serves the Milwaukee community through a network of social services, from housing to community development, foster care, shelters, and food pantries, to workforce readiness training, counseling, and even providing health services.
Holy Redeemer has a history of serving the community with a level of dedication that I believe makes them truly unique. Bishop Daniels, it is a pleasure to have you before this subcommittee. I am proud of what you are doing and I look forward to your testimony.
Mr. Chairman, I yield back.
Mr. NEY. The chair recognizes the gentleman from Massachusetts for three minutes, Mr. Frank.
Page 7 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Mr. FRANK. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
First, I want to express my disappointment that we have no representative of HUD here today. We had assumed that the majority would have invited the Administration, as in my experience it always has on an oversight hearing over a particular Administration's program. In fact, the gentleman from California and I wrote a letter to the Secretary because we had assumed he had declined to send a representative. He told us he had not been invited. I should note that we have remedied that lack of, I think, courtesy to the department involved by exercising our right under rule 11 of the House. So all the members on the Democratic side have exercised our right to ask for secretarial hearings, which is a matter of right, and we will have a HUD representative. I think it is a grave error not to have HUD explain some of these issues. As I said, I am surprised that the majority assume, frankly, that it would be a good idea not to have HUD here.
I am particularly concerned about a couple of aspects of this. One, this program is now going to be available under the Community Development Block Grant Program. That means every governing body of every community of 50,000 or more in America will be given the Federal funds to give to whatever religion they wish. I want to know how HUD is going to be supervising that; how they will supervise, for example, the rule that says you can build a house of worship with a mix of private and public funds, but you cannot worship in the public funds part. I am just wondering how we are prepared to police that, not that I think it is a good idea to get into a situation where you have to do that throughout the country, through CDBG.
I also want to reinforce the point that was made so well by the ranking member, the gentlewoman from California. Beginning in 1954 with the case of Brown v. Board of Education, one of the great things about this Federal government has been its dedication to abolishing discrimination based on race, based on religion, based on gender, based on age, based on handicaps. There have been court opinions. There have been statutes. There have been regulations. There have been executive orders. The President's proposal appears to me to be a turning back of that clock. It sanctions discrimination. Indeed, we have previously held that while you might have a right to discriminate purely privately, the receipt of Federal funds gives you an even greater obligation not to discriminate. This proposal turns that on its head. People who receive Federal funds as we have interpreted this, and it has not been refuted, religious groups who receive Federal funds for secular purposes will be allowed to discriminate on religious grounds. That seems to me a terrible retreat from the principle of non-discrimination to which we have been committed.
Page 8 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Indeed, the Federal funds, instead of giving you an added burden not to discriminate, become a license to discriminate. I know there are people who say, well, you should never burden people. I am reminded of the great words of the gentlewoman from California's distinguished predecessor, Mr. Gus Hawkins, who said when we reenacted a bill that the Supreme Court had narrowed, we said if you take Federal funds, you cannot discriminate, and people complained about interference. If you dip your hands in the Federal till, do not complain when a little democracy rubs off on your fingers.
Now, what we are being told is you can dip your hands in the Federal till, and you come away immunized from the responsibility not to discriminate. I would like to ask particularly some of the representatives of the religious groups becauseand I will finish in one minute, Mr. Chairmanas the gentlewoman from California quite correctly pointed out, there is nothing in the law now properly interpreted which says that religious groups cannot get the money. The point is that they have to abide by the rules everybody else abides by. Apparently, there are some religious groups that have said, and I have heard this from members in this Congress, we cannot take the money to provide homeless shelters or drug treatment programs or soup kitchens or other important social purposes unless we can hire only our own people. The notion that there is something wrong about religious people joining in non-religious activities with people of other religions is profoundly disturbing to me. I would think the world would have had too much of that, too much of the notion of religious separatism.
So I really need to have answered for me what is it about people of other religions that makes people want to discriminate against them in hiring for purely secular purposes?
With that, Mr. Chairman, I look forward to the hearing, and I would note again that we have delivered the letter, and I look forward to our havingand I am sorry, apparently there was a misunderstandingbut we will have a second day of hearings under the rule in which we will get a representative from HUD because there are some important questions to be answered.
Page 9 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Mr. NEY. The gentleman from Georgia, Mr. Scott?
Mr. SCOTT. Thank you very much, Chairman Ney and Ranking Member Waters and Ranking Member Frank. I want to thank you for holding this hearing today regarding HUD's proposed rule on faith-based organizations.
I also want to thank the panel of witnesses today for coming before us and giving your important testimony. I look forward to hearing from faith-based organizations about their experiences in working with governmental agencies to address community needs. I believe that we should look to find creative ways to help more individuals in need in our community. And I believe that we have got to also be very concerned about keeping our constitutional protections against discrimination. Therein lies the rub. Where is the balance and how can we help smaller faith-based groups participate in HUD programs?
I come from an area in this country thata district that is urban, suburban, rural. I know, as many of my colleagues do, we run for office every other year, and we know the pivotal role that churches play in our communities. And certainly in many, many communities, but perhaps nowhere more significantly a role the church plays than in those African American communities, and many lower-income communities where the church is the central entity in that community, around which culture and educational, social development, community development takes place.
So on one level the church is very attractive as a means, as a vehicle to do a tremendous amount of good. I have a number of ministers who have reached out to me and say, ''I want to participate in this faith-based initiative; my church can qualify here; I want to do some things; I want to help drug addiction; I want to improve the community; I want to build a community center; I want to do these thingscan you help me get some of that faith-based initiatives grants and money, and how do we go about this?''
But yet, the nagging question comes back to me of this balance. There have been some very disturbing questions raised by our ranking member, Ms. Maxine Waters, and certainly our ranking member, Mr. Frank of Massachusetts. We have got the find answers to those questions. It certainly disturbs me that HUD saw fit not to have a representative come here.
Page 10 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Mr. NEY. The time of the gentleman has expired.
Mr. SCOTT. May I just wrap up with one final point, please?
Mr. NEY. The gentleman may.
Mr. SCOTT. Thank you so much.
I think governing those answers have got to be this big, big issue of how do we deal effectively with the separation of church and state. Having been one who has fought that battle to the Supreme Court, there are three legs upon which that separation rests, around which pivots, hopefully, this discussion, for it to be meaningful. One leg is that it must be religious-neutral. What we do must neither advance a religious cause, nor restrain it. The other is secularthat there be a secular purpose; and thirdly, that there is no religious entanglement.
I am looking for answers to questions today so that I can take back to my constituency and make the right decision, and I look forward to receiving those answers.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman, for expanding my time.
Mr. NEY. The time of the gentleman has expired.
The gentleman, Mr. Watt, from North Carolina?
Mr. WATT. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I appreciate the chairman convening this hearing. Like Mr. Frank, I am disappointed that we do not have a representative here from HUD to answer some of the difficult questions that are being raised. I want to thank all of these witnesses for being here, but I doubt that they are going to be able to address the concerns that we have about it, because I think uniformly they are interested in the same thing that we are interested in, which is how do you get services into communities and do it in an effective way that gets results.
I heard my wife say a couple of days ago to somebody that she was giving up aggravation and stress for Lent. So I am trying to make sure that I do not get aggravated and stressed about this issue because the truth is, I know that religious institutions, churches have been providing services in my community and our communities for years and years and years before this President ever came along talking about some kind of faith-based initiative. The only difference I can discern is that as soon as he started talking about the faith-based initiative and showing up in some of the churches in our communities, a bunch of my ministers starting lining up at the door saying to me, ''I want some of that faith-based money.'' They were surprised when I told them that at the same time the President was announcing his faith-based initiative, he was actually cutting many of the programs that they had been accessing to provide housing to our communities and social services to our communities, and after school programs to our communities, and that there was no such thing as a faith-based fund. So I am not sure exactly what the fuss was all about.
Page 11 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 So you should know first of all that I have concerns about this because the total amount of funds that are available to do this stuff is being cut by the President, at the same time he is talking about having some faith-based initiative. He is going to need a bunch of help from churches and other institutions to get the same amount of services because you have less money out there to do it with.
Second, I think this is going to open churches up.
Mr. NEY. The time of the gentleman has expired. Would you like to wrap up?
Mr. WATT. No, I think I will justI am going to follow my wife's entreaty. I am going to give up this aggravation and stress for Lent. I mean, you know, we have made the point.
Mr. FRANK. Mr. Chairman, unanimous consent that as a great admirer of Mrs. Watt, could I ask that this part of the record be sent to her?
Mr. NEY. Absolutely.
I would also note if we would like to give up aggravation and stress for Lent, we will recess for a month. That would probably help the country, too.
Mr. WATT. I do not think they are going to let me do that, but if you want to make that motion, I will second it.
Mr. NEY. With that, the gentleman from Alabama, Mr. Davis?
Mr. DAVIS. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Let me thank all of you for coming today. At the risk of echoing some of what has been said, I want to pause for a minute on the point my friend from North Carolina just made. If you look at a lot of the programs that you all are trying to bring within the purview of faith-based organizations, they have an interesting characteristic in common. Almost every single one of them is under the President's budget axe right now. I am struck by that. I am struck by the Administration's withdrawing with one hand what it extends with the other hand. I would I suppose issue this invitation to all of you. The same passion and zeal that you bring to the cause of including faith-based organizations in various government programs, I hope that you will take that same passion down to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue or to whatever is the street of HUD, to let them know that these programs are vitally important regardless of whether faith-based organizations are allowed to participate or not.
Page 12 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 I compliment you for recognizing something that I do think is very important, that there is a moral dimension to the social commitment and the social fabric we have in this country. I happen to come from the third poorest congressional district in America, and I talk a great deal about religion and faith, but I do it in this sense. I do it in the sense that when Matthew says as you do unto the least of these, you do it unto me. That is the sense that ought to animate, frankly, a lot more of our political debate. To the extent that all of you recognize that, and I think that all of you do, I hope that is the message that you take down the street, that as you do unto the least of these, you do it unto me.
I want to make a larger point. As someone who was born in Montgomery, Alabama, the home of the Montgomery bus boycott, which was a classic instance of faith firing a movement in this country, I have this old-fashioned belief, frankly, that churches do very well when they are independent, and that churches do very well when they do not have to come hat in hand to the Federal government seeking anything. When Martin Luther King was standing in the well of that church in Montgomery, Alabama in 1954, he could not pick up the phone and call Dwight Eisenhower's Administration. I happen to think that in some ways he was the better for that, and that his cause was the better for that.
So as we talk about weakening even symbolically the wall between church and state, I think we ought to recognize this. Churches get their moral firepower in some ways from their sense of independence and from their sense that their cause does not require the Federal government's permission or the Federal government's largesse.
I would make just one last point. I am deeply concerned that the whole notion of faith-based access has taken on an air of political patronage. I cannot tell you how many preachers in my community endorse certain politicians because they thought they would get the faith-based hook-up. There is something wrong with that. There is something wrong with political patronage having a religious cloak around it. And there is something wrong with men of faith and women of faith feeling that they have to meet some informal political litmus test. That is an inevitable cost of this erosion of the wall. It is an inevitable cost of what this Administration is doing when it comes to weakening that wall.
Page 13 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 I yield back. I thank you, Mr. Chairman, for extending my time.
Mr. NEY. Mr. Miller of North Carolina.
Mr. MILLER. Thank you. I will not use my entire time.
Both my maternal grandmother and my maternal grandfather had died by the time my mother was age four. She was raised in a Baptist orphanage in Thomasville, North Carolina. I understand very well the great works that we do when we act on faith, when we do truly love our neighbors as ourselves. But I do share many of the concerns that other members of the committee have raised about these proposed rules, that there is no reason that when religious groups are receiving Federal funds that they should not be held to the same rules as everyone else.
Mr. NEY. I thank the gentleman, and I want to welcome all the witnesses to Washington, D.C., the U.S. Capital. Thank you in advance for your testimony that will be so important.
I would like to start with the introduction of Dr. E. LeBron Fairbanks, President of Mount Vernon Nazarene University, Mount Vernon, Ohio, which happens to be in Knox County in the 18th district in Ohio, of which I am from. I was at the university just this past week and met a lot of good people up there. It is a wonderful university. They were preparing, in fact, the students to go do a lot of charitable work. Some headed out to New York and other parts of the United States. I just really want to give our warm welcome to Dr. Fairbanks today. And for the introduction of the next witness, I will yield to our ranking member, Ms. Waters.
Ms. WATERS. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. I would certainly like to introduce my good friend, Reverend Wendell Anthony, who is the pastor of Fellowship Chapel, Detroit, Michigan. But before I do that, I am not introducing, but I certainly want to welcome Reverend Kirbyjon Caldwell, pastor of the Windsor Village United Methodist Church in Houston, Texas. He is a friend. He is a friend of my husband's, and I am welcome in his church. While we may disagree philosophically and politically on some things, I want you to know you are welcome, and indeed I appreciate your friendship.
Page 14 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 The introduction that I am making today is of Reverend Wendell Anthony, an extraordinary minister. He is a native of St. Louis, Missouri. He was educated in the Detroit public school system from elementary through high school. He graduated from Wayne State University with a BA in political science, and Marygrove College with an MA in pastoral ministry. He also attended the University of Detroit for advanced study and Black theology. Reverend Anthony is a certified social worker with the state of Michigan.
I would like to just share with you that he is the current President of the Detroit branch of the NAACP, the largest branch in the country, with a current membership of more than 45,000 persons. He is a single father with two daughters, and he has received so many rewards and so much recognition for his work. I have been to his church on many occasions. He is the member of a lot of boards and councils inside the city of Detroit, including New Detroit, Incorporated; Michigan Coalition of Human Rights; and the Minority State Health Policy Advisory Council. I am also blessed to be invited each year to the NAACP banquet where he has about 10,000 paying individuals in one room, and four head tables of different colors around the auditorium. It is the most amazing thing that you would see.
Lastly, let me just say this. He is responsible for a lot of ministries and programs, but I happened to be at his church when he started and organized the Rwanda relief effort, and with the Detroit branch of the NAACP, raised nearly $1 million in monies for transport of victuals, food, clothing, medical supplies and aid to Rwanda, Goma and Zaire. This an extraordinary man whose ministry has touched so many lives in so many ways. He is operating out of his church a number of programs that I saw listed here that I cannot put my finger on at this time, but I welcome him and I want you to know that we are particularly advantaged by his presence here today.
Thank you very much for being with us, Dr. Wendell Anthony.
Mr. NEY. I want to thank the gentlelady. Also, I was so caught up in the great job that Dr. Fairbanks does up there with the staff and the students, I did fail to mention that he also has been associated with Nazarene education programs in Switzerland, the Philippines and Ohio since 1978, and he serves as a Presidential mentor in the Executive Leadership Institute of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities.
Page 15 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 I would like at this time to introduce Reverend Kirbyjon Caldwell, pastor of Windsor Village United Methodist Church. That is in Houston, Texas. He is the senior pastor of the Windsor Village United Methodist Church. Over the past 20 years, Pastor Caldwell has grown the Windsor congregation from 25 members to the largest United Methodist Church in the nation. Reverend Caldwell attributes the evolution of Windsor Village to his belief that the church must embrace theology, identify societal problems, and deliver solutions holistically. I want to welcome the witness.
We will yield to the gentleman from Massachusetts to introduce the next witness.
Mr. FRANK. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Our next witness is no stranger to these deliberations. Her name is Ellen Feingold. She is from Newton, Massachusetts and she is a very experienced individual, both in the field of civil rights and is a leader of a faith-based organization that has been very well-funded by the Federal government, although not as well-funded as she would like, but there is a lot of that going around. But Ms. Feingold, who has a very distinguished career, was during the Carter Administration director of civil rights in the Department of Transportation, so she has a particular expertise in the discrimination area. She was the co-chair of the commission we recently had appointed by a bipartisan congressional effort, on senior housing. And most relevantly today, she runs Jewish Community Housing for the Elderly. It has the word ''Jewish'' in it, and it has never been denied any money for that reason. It is an organization set up by the Jewish community in greater Boston to deal with housing problems. She administers a large number of units. It has continued to be called the Jewish Community Housing for the Elderly. It does not discriminate, but it's very much a faith-based organization. Even more, as she will note, she represents the association of housing groups, all of which are faith-based, and none of which have, she tells us, suffered any discrimination. So she brings a multiple of important perspectives to this hearing.
Page 16 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Mr. NEY. I want to thank the gentleman, and yield to Mr. Green for the introduction of the next witness.
Mr. GREEN. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
As I made reference to in my opening remarks, I am very proud to have here today Bishop Sedgwick Daniels. He is the pastor of the Holy Redeemer Church of God in Christ in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Since 1986, Holy Redeemer has served the Milwaukee community not just as a place of worship, but as a true multi-faceted community resource. The services provided by Holy Redeemer include education, housing and social services. It is a true treasure in our community, and I welcome him here with the subcommittee.
Mr. NEY. The next witness is the Reverend J. Brent Walker, who is the executive director of the Baptist Joint Committee in Washington, D.C. Reverend Walker served as the general counsel for the committee for 10 years before becoming its fifth executive director in more than 65 years. Reverend Walker is an ordained minister and an adjunct professor at Georgetown University Law Center. Welcome.
The last witness is Douglas Kmiec. He is the dean of the school of law at Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. Dean Kmiec also taught at Notre Dame and Pepperdine University. The dean served as principal deputy and assistant attorney general, office of legal counsel, in the Department of Justice from 1985 to 1989. He also received the distinguished service award from the Department of Housing and Urban Development in 1983.
I want to welcome all the witnesses. Without objection, your written statements will be made part of the record. You will each be recognized for a five-minute summary of your testimony. I would also note and I would apologize, I do have a conflict and Mr. Green, the vice chairman, will be chairing the committee, but it is a very important step you are taking in being here today.
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STATEMENT OF E. LEBRON FAIRBANKS, PRESIDENT, MOUNT VERNON NAZARENE UNIVERSITY, MOUNT VERNON, OHIO
Mr. FAIRBANKS. Mr. Chairman and committee members, greetings.
Mount Vernon Nazarene University is located on a beautiful 401-acre campus in Mount Vernon, Ohio, a city of 15,000 people located approximately 50 miles northeast of Columbus. The university was founded in 1968 on property purchased by community leaders and given to the new faith-based institution. The strong town-gown partnership is even more powerful and dynamic today. Enrollment this year in our numerous academic programs exceeds 2,300 students, a significant increase from the 191 students in the founding class. Consistent with our motto, ''to seek to learn is to seek to serve.'' Mount Vernon Nazarene University educates students to embrace their chosen vocations of business, education, ministry, social work or medicine with a servant's heart.
As I understand the current HUD regulations, institutions like Mount Vernon Nazarene University are ineligible for any Federal housing assistance due to our faith-based nature. For the institution I serve, adequate quality housing on campus for low-income families, especially single parent and married students is crucial and currently unavailable. Since many of our students come from the Appalachian region of Ohio, West Virginia and Eastern Kentucky, and are first-generation college students, they simply cannot afford the typical rental facilities off-campus. I applaud and support the efforts of the Department of Housing and Urban Development to broaden the eligibility for Federally funded low-cost housing to include faith-based organizations and institutions. We only desire to be able to compete on equal footing for Federal assistance with all other eligible organizations.
I want to respond to the three specific questions asked of this panel. Number one, the proposed regulations, if enacted, as I understand them, would provide significant assistance. I recommend a clear definition and statement be added for faith-based higher education institutions such as Mount Vernon Nazarene University. Number two, the partnership between the Federal government and faith-based institutions could be substantially strengthened. In our situation, the lack of affordable housing leads some students to choose a college or university without the definitive and critical link between service and learning.
Page 18 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Number three, approving the proposed HUD rule would enable faith-based higher education institutions to serve more low-income individuals who yearn to become self-sufficient.
Let me offer you an illustration of one woman's desire for self-sufficiency. Shannon, a Mount Vernon Nazarene University student, was single with a small child living in a previously funded, but subsequently sold HUD housing development. The neighborhood had deteriorated and become dangerous. Shannon wanted to move, but could not afford alternative housing. Each day after student teaching, she picked up her child from day care and literally prayed, ''please do not let anything happen to me or my baby; help me survive another night.'' Shannon's story could be repeated by other Mount Vernon Nazarene University students. I am pleased to report today that Shannon graduated with honors from our university and is a dedicated, influential teacher in the Mount Vernon school district, working with children of low-income families.
I believe passionately in faith-based higher education institutions. In the past 35 years, the 11,000 alumni of the institution I serve have been challenged to make a difference in their world. Other faith-based institutions can echo our experience. We solicit your assistance in significantly increasing our potential for influence by approving and strengthening the proposed HUD regulatory changes for faith-based organizations.
[The prepared statement of E. LeBron Fairbanks can be found on page 12 in the appendix.]
Mr. GREEN. Thank you for your testimony.
Reverend Anthony, welcome.
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STATEMENT OF REVEREND WENDELL ANTHONY, PASTOR, FELLOWSHIP CHAPEL, DETROIT, MICHIGAN
Reverend ANTHONY. Thank you. To the committee and to those of my colleagues who have gathered here, let me thank you first of all for having me here to say a word about this most critical issue.
First of all, let me just indicate at the outset that faith-based initiatives is the very initiative that causes us to be churches and institutions of faith. An initiative of faith requires a lot of work. We walk by faith, and not by sight, particularly when the budget is short all we have is faith, in many instances. So from the very outset, faith is the root which causes this tree to grow.
I do want to just say, as we remember executive order 11246, which prohibits the Federal government from discriminating against Federal employees, government contractors and subcontractors and grantees that have construction contracts on the basis of race, creed, religion, color, national origin or sex, has a long and distinguished history in preserving the equal opportunity of our nation. It even dates back to President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his work with human rights activist A. Philip Randolph. As we look at the proposed rule change presented by HUD, it would unfortunately give religious organizations a special right to ignore laws and the Constitution of the United States which guarantees the freedom of religious expression, as well as denominational preference. It is my fear that the current language in the HUD proposed law suggests that religious institutions may retain their independence from Federal, state or local governments. It can be misinterpreted to suggest that religious institutions are exempt from the non-discrimination laws.
It is also my concern, particularly coming from an area in our nation where we have a large community of Muslim Americans, many who practice Islam, who are not a part of the Christian tradition, that these laws and this new regulation can somehow be misconstrued to allow us to discriminate against those who do not share our particular theological view. Scriptures teach us that God is no respecter of any persons. I am also concerned that this rule would present a barrier to dollars that are already reduced in the Community Development Block Grant programs, particularly as it relates to the dissemination of monies that go for organizations in our communities.
Page 20 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Further, I am concerned about the direct funding to religious institutions that proselytize and provide religious instruction at facilities where beneficiaries of such programs may redeem coupons, certificates or vouchers. The direct funding could lead to a mixture and a merger of funds from the regular offering plate to those that come in through Federal programs. Additionally, this carrot and stick approachthe carrot, of course, being, one, to gain political favors and support on the basis of financial contributions; the stick being in auditing or eliminating from financial services of a church or institution that in fact does not carry the political line.
I would like to recommend to this committee, however, that we do consider the increase of funding to faith-based organizations that are small, that need resources, that need financial resources, that need available technical assistance. We created a CDC, community development corporation, to do housing, to do education. We are in the process of building a new church. We are in the process of doing single-family homes, senior homes, establishing a community center and a retail component. We created a community development corporation to do those things. While we relish money and need support, we do not relish the government coming into our business and calling us to task on issues that have nothing to do with what we are doing in terms of faith-based development.
We also believe that there is a great need to provide funding and to restructure lending practices to small and low-income families. They can have an appropriate credit review to review the process of scoring, to review the process of how one secures mortgages, because we run into that when we want to provide housing to people who have low income. They have a problem with getting the very housing that we want to provide to them. So we hope and we pray that the government would not interfere with the work of the church. The church has been doing it for many, many years after the government intervention. So often the government gives us a little to get in, but not enough to continue. We believe that if we fund the appropriate organizations, we can accomplish the strengthening of America and its families.
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[The prepared statement of Wendell Anthony can be found on page 14 in the appendix.]
Mr. GREEN. [Presiding.] Thank you for your testimony.
Reverend Caldwell, welcome.
STATEMENT OF REVEREND KIRBYJON CALDWELL, PASTOR, WINDSOR VILLAGE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH
Reverend CALDWELL. Thank you, Acting Chairman Green, and to Ranking Members Waters and Frank, and the balance of the members of the committee. Thank you so much for inviting each of us to be here.
Congresswoman Waters mentioned the fact that I know her husband, and indeed her husband and I grew up in the same 'hood, if you would, affectionately known as Fitzwater, TexasHouston, TexasFitzwater, Texas. And while growing up in Fitzwater, while I had no idea I would I would become a pastor, if I may say, the Lord placed on my spirit, yea, even at a young age, that more churches need to take the sanctuary to the streets, take the sanctuary to the streets. That has really been our approach at Windsor. We have over eight or nine different 501(c)(3)s, which are independently managed and run, independent from the church, one of which is a CDC. We develop houses. We develop programs for persons with AIDS, schools, et cetera, et cetera.
To be very honest with you, we have been doing this for almost 17 years, and all of a sudden, abracadabra, it becomes faith-based, complete with all the political hoopla associated with it. I think it is unfortunate because it seems as if we are getting substance and style confused. I am happy to hear all the comments from the members of the committee, because it has really enlightened me. I am not a politician. I am not a lawyer. I am just a little pastor trying to help the people. But to hear the program referred to as almost mandatory, as if you have to get involved, I think is a little bit misleading. If you do not like the policy of the faith-based deal, then do not apply. Some folk have mentioned it is very Christian, and I really abhor that statement that was made by the gentleman you mentioned, Congresswoman. That was very unfortunate because based on my interpretation, the Administration is very clear that this is truly an ecumenical initiative, and in fact it is even for folk with no faith. You do not have to believe in anything or anybody, and you can still apply for funds.
Page 22 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 I think that gets to the very core issue, which is, as I understand it, the Administration in general, HUD in particular wants to level the playing field so that whosoever will, if you could, could and would come. It is HUD's desire to (A), remove whatever regulatory or administrative barriers that may be present; and (B), enhance or increase the capacity for building more programs for more people on a more equitable basis.
I could go on and on and on, but I will close. I am not real sure how much time I have left, but anything we can do to improve the community and increase social entrepreneurship in helping the least, the last and the lost, without crossing the lines of the Constitution, I think we should get after it. Again, I am not a legislator. I leave it up to this sage and insight wisdom of those of you who are seated here how to work that out. But please, do not deny those who are trying to make a difference. Contrary to some popular opinion, Windsor and the 501(c)(3)s have not received a lot of money, in fact any money from the Administration, but we want to make certainthat is not to say we will not try to get some. But it is to say that I think there are more smaller entities in America that could really benefit, not just from the financial support, but from the technical support which the faith-based initiative offers, as I understand it, is ready, able and willing to lend.
Thank you very much.
[The prepared statement of Kirbyjon Caldwell can be found on page 15 in the appendix.]
Mr. GREEN. Thank you. You may not have the wisdom of a legislator, but I know we do not have your wisdom, and that is why we have invited you here. We appreciate your testimony.
Ms. Feingold, welcome.
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STATEMENT OF ELLEN FEINGOLD, PRESIDENT, JEWISH COMMUNITY HOUSING FOR THE ELDERLY
Ms. FEINGOLD. Thank you so much for inviting me. I am so pleased to be here.
Jewish Community Housing for The Elderly has facilities that are in both Congressman Frank's and Congressman Capuano's district. I am sorry Congressman Capuano is not here to hear us. We have found no obstacles for a faith-based, a faith-committed organization in accessing Federal funds. We own and manage over 1,000 units of housing for low-income seniors. Their average age is over 80. Their average income is under $10,000. Over half of them are eligible for nursing homes, but they can stay in our buildings because of the services we are able to access for them. We are proud of our record of nondiscrimination, both in employment and also in the residents that come and live in our buildings.
In addition to representing my own organization, I am also representing the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging, with over 5,600 nonprofit organizations of whom 75 percent are faith-based. I am also representing the Association of Jewish Aging Services, obviously all of whose organizations are faith-based. We are talking about well over one million seniors living in the housing that these faith-based organizations are now providing with HUD money. It does not sound like a problem that needs solving. No member organization of either of these associations has ever complained of obstacles on the basis of their being faith-based organizations. We do bring an extra measure of commitment, quality and value to what we do, but we do it on a nonsectarian basis. Everybody is welcome.
When I was co-chair of the Commission on Affordable Housing and Health Care Facility Needs of Seniors in the 21st Century, the Seniors Commission heard testimony all over the country. We heard people praising the faith-based organizations that had created housing, but what we heard much more than that was, we need more. Where is the money to build more? The organizations are there. They are competent. They are committed. They are ready. There is no money to do it with. That is what we need to be focusing on.
Page 24 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Ultimately, the commission put out 50 recommendations that might make it better, easier to create more senior housing. Not one of them deals with the issue of obstacles to faith-based organizations because it was never presented to us as a problem and none of the members of the commission several of whom are in fact running faith-based organizations, saw it as a problem. We strongly oppose any actions that would lower the standards in any way for the facilities that are built with Federal funds. We oppose the use of funds to create spaces that are sectarian. We are well able to function within our faith in the spaces that come under our nonsectarian guidelines.
I brought with me something that I want to give to you. At Jewish Community Housing for the Elderly, we have a community Seder. Passover is coming. This is the Haggadah we use. For those of you who have never been to a seder, it is a service that recounts the Exodus. This Haggadah is in four languagesEnglish, Hebrew, Russian and Chinesebecause the participants in our seders, all of whom are voluntary, come in all colors, shapes, denominations and languages. The seder is obviously entirely funded with charitable funds, not with government funds. The books are produced with charitable funds, not government funds. It is one of the high points of the year. So is Chinese New Year, which our Chinese residents celebrate as a religious holiday. That is funded by private funds. We have no obstacles to respecting and celebrating the diversity of religions within our communities.
The stark issue, again, is the lack of funds. We would build more in a heartbeat if we had more money. The 202 program is, I believe Secretary Martinez alone has
Mr. GREEN. Ms. Feingold, if you could wrap your testimony up.
Ms. FEINGOLD. I apologize. I just want to say that it is your constituents who call us and call you looking for more housing. We do not believe there is an obstacle. We do not believe this rule will make the slightest bit of difference. What will make a difference is more funding.
Page 25 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Thank you very much.
[The prepared statement of Ellen Feingold can be found on page 16 in the appendix.]
Mr. FRANK. Mr. Chairman, just briefly, I would just like to say a the end of this, it would now be appropriate if we asked Ms. Feingold only four questions.
Mr. GREEN. Okay.
Ms. FEINGOLD. That sounds like the seder.
Mr. GREEN. Bishop Daniels, welcome. Good to see you again.
STATEMENT OF BISHOP SEDGWICK DANIELS, PASTOR, HOLY REDEEMER INSTITUTIONAL CHURCH OF GOD IN CHRIST, MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN
Bishop DANIELS. Thank you. Let me also say that I spoke with Bishop Patterson this morning, the presiding bishop of our church, who supports the comments that I shall make at this time.
Thank you, Mr. Acting Chairman, and distinguished members of this august body. I am pleased to be here today to testify to you with respect to the efforts of Holy Redeemer Church of God in Christ and its affiliated entities and connection with the development of efforts to improve the lives of citizens in our city, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Mr. Chairman, perhaps a little background may be helpful to you. We founded Holy Redeemer ministry 17 years ago with eight persons, and have grown this ministry to over 5,000 persons, representing people of every background and skill. Our organization has more than 39 affiliated entities which are involved in self-improvement activities such as the creation of a 140,000 square foot youth center in a neighborhood densely populated by low-income students; development of multiple public-private operations; school initiatives which have resulted in improvement of education for some of the most economically distressed youngsters in Milwaukee. We have now educated and are now educating more than 750 students daily, including students at risk and other students in our schools.
Page 26 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 The development of a health clinic has been our focus on bringing the marvels of medicine directly to the community that we serve through a clinic located on our campus, which is affiliated with a faith-based organization called Covenant Health Carea large health care provider in Wisconsin. Our campus is a redevelopment of a 10-acre site which was previously distressed and in fact was vacant. We have turned this site into a vibrant complex and campus serving literally thousands of people each day who receive a variety of servicesmeals, job training, health education and care, top-flight elementary and adult education.
Our mission, then, is to have a 24/7 outreach to this community. The demographic data for this community reflects that not only are we providing services, but this has resulted in the employment of hundreds of people. The success stories are indeed marvelous. One of the best examples is one of our school administrators, who through many efforts used welfare outreach services to college, educates herself, ultimately becoming a college graduate. And after several years of working as a teacher, she became one of our school administrators on our campus. In fact, President George W. Bush visited our campus last year to get a first-hand view of the remarkable effects we are having on people and changing lives.
The examples go on and on with respect to how we have changed the lives of people. We have also been critically involved in the housing initiative in our community. When we consciously moved our campus to the economically depressed central city area, many were surprised that we did so and thought that we might move to a tranquil suburban environment. But we intentionally did not do so because we really knew where the needs were. One of the things we found was that many people had housing needselderly people, people who were in transition, people who were searching for the American homeownership dream. We therefore, with the cooperation of the city of Milwaukee and through the use of Federal tax credits, developed a premier low-rise elderly housing project, which has received many recognitions, including a special award from the Federal Home Loan Bank Board. The facility is over-subscribed and there is a tremendous demand for us to provide additional facilities for seniors.
Page 27 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 We also obtained and rehabilitated many homes in the area where we are, for transitional needs of our people. Many of these people have used this program as a springboard to putting their lives back together, and they have moved on to very productive citizenship. In connection with the local bank, we have also instituted
Mr. GREEN. Mr. Daniels, we need you to wrap up, please.
Bishop DANIELS. Very good. That is a good thing to tell a minister.
our homeownership seminar and progressive program.
In summary, I think that it is important to know that people that have visited our campus have noted that we have been able to create an improved housing stock in our neighborhood, created an environment with literally hundreds of people from our neighborhood have meaningful life-supporting jobs. This is the commission to which we are called, and we hope that you through your legislative powers will recognize that such faith-based initiatives such as ours are vital in many communities throughout the country.
[The prepared statement of Sedgwick Daniels can be found on page 18 in the appendix.]
Mr. GREEN. Thank you very much.
Mr. Walker, welcome.
STATEMENT OF REVEREND J. BRENT WALKER, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, BAPTIST JOINT COMMITTEE, WASHINGTON, D.C.
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Reverend WALKER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and members of the subcommittee for this opportunity to speak to you about a matter as important as religious liberty and the separation of church and state.
Although as the chairman mentioned, I serve as an adjunct professor at Georgetown University Law Center, I speak today only on behalf of the Baptist Joint Committee on Public Affairs. The Baptist Joint Committee has always advocated a well-balanced and sensibly centrist approach to church-state issues. We take seriously both religion clauses in the First Amendmentno establishment and free exerciseas essential guarantees for our God-given religious liberty.
We appreciate the good works of religiously affiliated nonprofits, in careful cooperation with government entities such as HUD. But we believe that religion will be harmed, not helped, by efforts of government to fund pervasively religious enterprises or otherwise to advance religion. This is precisely what the Administration is trying to do through its proposed regulations. Government-funded religion is the wrong way to do right. Government's attempts to level the playing field, as the metaphor goes, usually results in religion getting leveled by government. Religion is different and it should be treated differently. It is treated differently in the First Amendmentsometimes deserving special accommodation under the free exercise clause; sometimes special or unique constraints under the establishment clause.
We are particularly concerned with three aspects of this proposal. One, the proposed rules open the door for government-funded religion. It is a settled constitutional principle that government may not fund pervasively sectarian or pervasively religious organizations and enterprises. The proposed rules ignore the pervasively sectarian doctrine. And even where an organization is not pervasively religious, but only religiously affiliated, it cannot use government funds to finance specifically religious activities. The proposed rules try to answer this constitutional requirement by prohibiting the funds from being used to support, quote, inherently religious activities, unquote. But the problem with this nebulous, novel and ill-defined concept is that the establishment clause prohibits activities which, while perhaps not inherently religious, may be administered in various religious ways and religious context in training seminars and counseling services and other activities.
Page 29 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Number two, the proposed rules allow for religious structures to be built with government funds that violate the establishment clause, as Congressman Frank mentioned. The rules specifically permit structures to be used for both religious and secular purposes, as long as the funding is proportionately reduced to equal the percentage of religious use. This approach creates the potential for excessive entanglement between church and state. It raises the specter of accounting problems and logistical difficulties and burdensome auditing and recordkeeping, and would most certainly create the need for perpetual monitoring. The rule change on government funding of religious structures opens a can of constitutional and administrative worms that will be inimical to the autonomy of religious organizations, and promote the very excessive entanglement which the First Amendment was designed to prohibit.
Third, the proposed rules permit discrimination on the basis of religion in hiring in government-funded programs. Now, we support title VII's exemption for churches, allowing them to discriminate on the basis of religion in their employment practices. But the proposed rules permit discrimination even in programs substantially funded by government. While allowing religious organizations to discriminate in the private sector is a welcomed accommodation of religion, to subsidize religious discrimination is arguably unconstitutional and in any case an unconscionable advancement of religion. How odd for the Administration to use the language of non-discrimination to promote a policy that leads to government-funded discrimination.
In summary then, government should not fund organizations that are pervasively religious. Government may fund religiously affiliated ones, organizations as you have heard that serve out of religious motivation to be sure, but not in a way that integrates religion into its programs, involves religious worship or instruction, education and proselytizing, or discriminates on the basis of religion in hiring or serving beneficiaries. Any religious programming by these groups should be separately offered and privately funded and voluntarily attended. To the degree the existing HUD regulations serve these ends, they should be retained. But to the extent the proposed HUD regulations vary from these principles, they should be rejected.
Page 30 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Thank you very much.
[The prepared statement of J. Brent Walker can be found on page 19 in the appendix.]
Mr. GREEN. Mr. Walker, thank you. Thanks so much.
Mr. Kmiec, welcome.
STATEMENT OF DOUGLAS W. KMIEC, J.D. DEAN, CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY OF AMERICA SCHOOL OF LAW, WASHINGTON, D.C.
Mr. KMIEC. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I am pleased to respond to the subcommittee's invitation. I have spent most of my life teaching or writing or thinking about constitutional questions. It was my privilege to serve as President Reagan's head of the office of legal counsel in the Department of Justice and to spend part of the first Bush Administration there as well. So I will address myself mostly, if not entirely, to those constitutional questions suggested by other witnesses and that may be raised by the members.
Let me begin with my conclusion, and that is that these regulations do not transgress the guarantee of freedom of religion found in the First Amendment of the United States Constitution. Instead, they do three things which are perfectly consistent with constitutional case law, as well as text, and that is first, they establish the principle of nondiscrimination. Government funds shall neither be distributed giving favoritism to nor discriminated against religious organizations. Significantly, this applies to both the Federal government and state and local governments that are often in partnership with the Department of Housing and Urban Development administering funds. Both are enjoined to treat religious organizations under the same eligibility requirements, and in my judgment not only is this fully constitutional, this is a principle that is unassailable and long overdue.
Page 31 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Second, it explicitly provides that funds supplied directly to a faith-based organization may not be used to support inherently religious activities such as worship, religious instruction and proselytization. Importantly, from the standpoint of religious freedom and nondiscrimination, the regulations make clear that even though government funds cannot be used for these purposes, nothing precludes a faith-based organization from continuing inherently religious activities from nongovernmental sources. Analogously, the regulations ensure that faith-based organizations can retain their independence, something which I have heard other members of the panel speak eloquently to, allowing for example, the continued use of a religious organizational name, as well as the inclusion of religion in the organization's definition, practice and expression.
Similarly, if HUD funds are provided for acquisition, construction or rehabilitation, and these are provided for under the regulations for structures that are either wholly secularly or of mixed use, that government funding cannot exceed the pro-rata secular portion. That aspect of the regulation merits constitutional inquiry, and I know in the question and answer period we may spend some time with it. I think it deserves a close look.
Thirdly, no current or prospective beneficiary of a government-funded service shall be discriminated against on the basis of religion or religious belief. No genuine faith-based organization would ever think about discriminating against someone who is a beneficiary on the basis of their religious belief. The men and women who are at this table are at this table because they believe they were called by a higher power to serve their fellow man in specific and very necessary ways. They are not in the practice of turning people away, and the HUD regulations establish that and affirm that proposition.
In summary, Mr. Chairman, the HUD regulations eliminate a variety of constitutionally unwarranted regulations of the past. In the past, regulations have categorically excluded religious organizations with the demeaning terminology ''pervasively sectarian organization.'' The Supreme Court of the United States in its most recent holdings has made clear that the terminology ''pervasively religious or sectarian organization'' is a demeaning one because it comes out of a 19th century hatred for religious believers and immigrants to our country. These regulations, importantly, separate us and put distance between that odious practice and the present day.
Page 32 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I would be happy to answer any questions.
[The prepared statement of Douglas W. Kmiec can be found on page 21 in the appendix]
Mr. GREEN. Thank you, Mr. Kmiec, for your testimony. I appreciate it very much.
QuestionsMr. Kmiec, let me begin with you. The standards that are in the proposed rule with respect to opening up service provision to organizations which may be faith-based, how does that compare to the standards that are in the existing welfare reform law passed by the Clinton Administration? Do you know? Can you answer that?
Mr. KMIEC. Well, I am not prepared to look at the specific Clinton proposals, but the one thing that is true is that what HUD has done here is follow a template that Congress has approved before several times in the context of charitable choice legislation. So to the extent that charitable choice worked its way into those specific Clinton Administration regulations, I think these are quite comparable.
Mr. GREEN. Thank you. I would like to go backReverend Caldwell, we have had testimony from some of the other witnesses that there are no obstacles or hindrances to faith-based organizations or community organizations accessing Federal funds and providing services. You started off with some smaller organizations which have provided services. Have you encountered obstacles? Have you seen challenges in working with the Federal government?
Reverend CALDWELL. No, sir. We have not encountered any obstacles because we have not applied for any funds. But it has been the experience of some of my colleagues that they have encountered obstacles, and that is one reason I am here today.
Mr. GREEN. Let me ask you this, then, why is it that you have not applied?
Page 33 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Reverend CALDWELL. Well, my shortest and most intelligent answer is that in the past we have not wanted to get involved in the red tape, to be honest with you. We are not afraid or ashamed to be audited. I think any church worth its salt ought to be open to Mrs. Jones and Mr. Booker and the U.S. government. But the impression is that it has been multilayered, and we have just kind of gone it aloneperiod, new paragraph. We intend to apply for funds regardless of what happens to this particular legislation.
Excuse me, I erred. We did receive a $500,000 grant from OCS during the Clinton Administration to help build what is called the Power Center, where we took an old dilapidated K-Mart building and gutted it. It now provides employment for over 247 persons, has a $14.5 million annual economic impact cash flow on the community. It is an amazing example of how private enterprises and nonprofit entities can and I think must come together to make an indelibly divine difference in the community. But that was an application filed by our Pyramid CDC, not by the church.
Mr. GREEN. When you took a look at, or when you weighed the costs and the benefits of making application for Federal funds, and again largely have chosen not to do so, was one of your fears that in order to meet all the requirements and sort through the red tape, that you would have to hire additional people?
Reverend CALDWELL. That is absolutely correct. In addition to that, to be very honest with you, I had heard such nightmarish stories about the process, we simply chose not to get involved. Again, you should not go based on hearsay. But we have so many things going on. We have nine or ten different 501(c)(3)s, 14,000-member church, half of them think they are the pastor on any given good day, so we have a lot of dynamics happening, and the last thing we needed to do was to allocate an inordinate percentage of our intellectual and financial resources to go after a grant which we may not even get.
Mr. GREEN. Bishop Daniels, could you relate some of Holy Redeemer's experience in working with the Federal government in terms of Federal funds? Have you seen red tape and obstacles?
Page 34 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Bishop DANIELS. Oh, definitely. For instance, there are some hurdles that we are overcoming even as I speak now. There was an abandoned building next door where there was flight from a manufacturing company. We wanted to turn that into, as opposed to it becoming a drug house and loitering et cetera, into a youth center. We were clearly told that if we were to receive any assistance through funds, whether it is city, that would be processed through CDBG and the State of Wisconsin and the Federal government, that it could not and would not by any stretch of the imagination be given to the church, and it could not be given. There were a number of hurdles that we had to overcome as a result of that. It was clear as we began to work through ultimately the title of that property had to be a separate organization altogether, to work to save the kids. What people do not understand is at 3 o'clock, all of those kids become our kids. It does not matter where they attend or what they do, we were just trying to get them off the streets and from killing one another, and getting them into constructive programs.
Mr. GREEN. Thank you very much.
The gentlelady from California is recognized.
Ms. WATERS. Yes, first of all let me thank all of our ministers and heads of organizations who are here today, and just really commend you on the programs that you already have and the work that you have already done, long before you heard about anything called a faith-based initiative. Let me just say to Reverend Kirbyjon Caldwell, 17 years, and how many nonprofits do you have over there?
Reverend CALDWELL. We have nine nonprofits.
Ms. WATERS. Nine nonprofits, 17 years, a CDC, and you did it without the government.
Reverend CALDWELL. So far.
Ms. WATERS. So far, you have done it without the government.
Reverend CALDWELL. Yes, ma'am.
Page 35 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Ms. WATERS. There were no obstacles to you setting up a 501(c)(3).
Reverend CALDWELL. That is correct.
Ms. WATERS. You can have a nonprofit corporation.
Reverend CALDWELL. That is correct.
Ms. WATERS. There is no obstacle to you applying for CDBG monies in the city of Houston.
Reverend CALDWELL. No obstacles locally?
Ms. WATERS. Yes.
Reverend CALDWELL. Not to my knowledge.
Ms. WATERS. That is Federal money that we send down to the cities for them to give out to the communities to do all these kinds of programssenior citizens, child care, et cetera. There are no obstacles to you or any other religious organization in applying for those funds under your 501(c)(3). Is that correct?
Reverend CALDWELL. None to us. I cannot speak to the other organizations.
Ms. WATERS. Well, here is the point that I am making.
Reverend CALDWELL. Yes, ma'am.
Ms. WATERS. I think it was Mr. Kmiec who said that it is important to have this faith-based initiative to get rid of and establish the principle of nondiscrimination for religion. Title VII does that. The Constitution does that. You are not discriminated in any way, and you are protected by Title VII and government law. What I think has been the misunderstanding about this faith-based initiative is this. Somebody is telling ministers that somehow you should be able to administer these programs without having to set up a 501(c)(3) or a separate organization; that you can commingle it with the church; and that you can use some of the laws that are on the books for religious organizations that allow you to hire within the religion in the same way when you use Federal money. That is where the rub, the disagreement comes in.
Page 36 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Much of what is being described is red tape that has nothing to do with discrimination against a religious organization. It does not matter. When you get money from the Federal government, you are going to go through some red tape. Nobody is going to reach in the government's pocket and hand anybody any money. You are going to go through some red tape. You are going to be scrutinized, and John Ashcroft is going to indict you if you spend the money outside of the regulations and the laws. And that we have to make very clear to everybody, that there will be no way even under faith-based initiative that you will be able not to be able to account in ways that we all would want to account. So we need to be clear about that. There is no discrimination now against religious organizations in competing for money.
The other thing is, does anyone here believe that there is a new pot of money called faith-based money? If so, raise your hand. Okay, we are clear about that. There is no new money called faith-based money. Technical assistance that was mentioned by Reverend Anthony, we can all agree on. We are not against religious organizations getting money. Again, we assist and we help people to set up CDCs and EDCs and even help to set up nonprofit organizations in order to do that. Do we all agree that a lot of churches could use some technical assistance in order to set up a 501(c)(3) or EDC or CDC in order to provide services, Reverend Anthony?
Reverend ANTHONY. Yes, congresswoman, we do. I come from Detroit, and what we are doingI am affiliated with an organization called New Detroit, Incorporated. What is part of our charge is to assist groups to do just that; to develop 501(c)(3)s. I also come from an area where the faith-based initiative has been used by some in administrative offices as a carrot and a stick approach. By that, I mean if I look at the history of those in Michigan who have benefited from the state's version of faith-based initiative, it has been those who are particularly friendly to the past Administration. The past Administration that was in office for 12 years used that as a measure by which to access the African American community. I am very clear about that. We are very clear about that.
Page 37 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 I do not think you will find any of us who oppose churches working with the government in partnership to do community development. We have always done that. The problem is I come from a state that has a $1.8 billion deficit, and within that confine we are looking now at churches to make up some of the areas where the government may not be able to provide services. Where are we going to get the money to do that? From our offerings, from our coffers? The problem that we run into is that we can do CDCs. Reverend Caldwell can do CDCs, but there are many other smaller churches and organizations that cannot. They need the assistance. Monies need to be provided through agencies that can assist them in terms of developing their programs and professional staff development.
We get that all the time. There is an old African proverb that says even the smallest deed is better than the greatest intention. I think we may have a good intention, but what we need is some small deeds, those deeds being money and capital and sense.
The other concern that I have is I look at what we see coming from many religious leaders today who are in various denominations. As we look at what is happening in the world, I think that it sets a precedent for some individuals to mis-use that initiative. I do no think that the vast majority of folk may be subject to that, but I do think that it opens up the door for people to discriminate
Mr. GREEN. I must ask you to wrap up.
Reverend ANTHONY. particularly as it relates to the area where I come from, which has a high degree of Muslim Americans who are not antithetical to America, but I know if certain folk get monies, they will not be able to participate in those programs.
Mr. GREEN. Thank you. The gentlelady's time has expired. The gentleman from Massachusetts, Mr. Frank.
Mr. FRANK. Mr. Kmiec, let me askyou did not touch on the question of employment discrimination. As you read this, would the recipients be allowed to take the money for the secular purpose and agree to hire only members of their own religion?
Page 38 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Mr. KMIEC. I agree with Congresswoman Waters that it is a fundamental guarantee of religious organizations in our society to be able to maintain their character by the people they hire.
Mr. FRANK. So the answer is yes.
Mr. KMIEC. That is correct.
Mr. FRANK. Now, so you believe that as this is constructed, you said you agree with Congresswoman Walters. Well, a Congresswoman named ''Walters'' might have said that. I do not think Ms. Waters said it. The question is
Mr. KMIEC. I believe Congresswoman Waters said quite eloquently
Mr. FRANK. I am sorry. I only have five minutes, Mr. Kmiec. Excuse Mr. Kmiec, I only have five minutes. I have to ask you this. And I want to ask the other members who are in favor of this, I am troubled, I must say, by the notion that it somehow would erode or corrode or detract from a religious organization engaged in secular good works, because that is obviously what we are talking about herethat religious organizations engaged in good works that were funded with Federal money for secular purposesI am troubled by the notion that it is wrong to ask them to associate with people of other religions. That just seems to me to be such a troubling notion. Let me ask, beginning with Mr. Fairbanks. Why would it be a problem if you were to do something purely secular, to hire people of other religions?
Mr. FAIRBANKS. Let me say that we are involved with our students in a variety of projects, and they are for sure not associated with religious groups.
Mr. FRANK. I have a specific question. Why would it be a distraction to youhow would it take away from your mission if you got money to provide drug treatment or help for the homeless and you had to hire people of other religions? How would that hurt?
Page 39 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Mr. FAIRBANKS. If a person would affirm their belief in what we are intending to do with our mission, our vision, and embrace those, then we could
Mr. FRANK. What do you mean byyou mean your general religious mission or your specific one for which you got the money? Let me pass on to Reverend Caldwell. Reverend Caldwell, do you believe that if you got Federal money to do drug treatment or youth work or any of these other things that were secular, that it would be a problem if you had to hire people of other religions?
Reverend CALDWELL. Mr. Congressman, we work with folk of big faith, little faith and no faith.
Mr. FRANK. So you are not asking for this. In other words, if we were to pass this without allowing discrimination in employment, that would not be a problem for you?
Reverend CALDWELL. Until I get it, I really do not know, but I do not think so. Let me quickly say
Mr. FRANK. That is the only question I had to ask about. Let me just ask again now to Bishop Daniels, when you set up that youth center next door, and you had people maybe teaching the kids to play basketball or do other things, would they have to be only people of your religion? Would it detract from your mission if you had to hire people without regard to their religion?
Bishop DANIELS. No, it does not detract, but we cannot even get to that point.
Mr. FRANK. I understand that. Many of us are in favor of that. But let me ask, why do you think it is bad for religion to have to hire people of other religions, for running the youth center?
Bishop DANIELS. I did not say it was bad.
Page 40 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Mr. FRANK. I know you did not, but I am asking Professor Kmiec to explain his view that it is, apparently.
Mr. KMIEC. I think the way I would approach it, congressman, would be this. Every citizen of this country contributes to the general fund that this body has to allocate. We generally do not say when a taxpayer comes up
Mr. FRANK. No, you are evading my question. I am sorry. We only have five minutes. I am asking you
Mr. KMIEC. they generally do not say
Mr. FRANK. Professor, you know better. You know what the rules are.
Mr. KMIEC. what religions are
Mr. FRANK. Mr. Chairman, I ask you to tell the witness to stop the filibuster.
Mr. GREEN. Let's have some decorum here.
Mr. FRANK. The witness is not answering the question.
Mr. GREEN. I believe he is attempting to answer the question.
Mr. FRANK. No, he is not.
Mr. GREEN. He may not be answering the way you like it.
Mr. FRANK. No, he is not answering. The question is, what is wrong in asking a religionhow does it hurt a
Mr. KMIEC. What is wrong with it, congressman, is that you are making religious believers into second-class citizens. We all contribute to the general funds of the United States of America. We all have an interest in seeing them fairly apportioned. These individuals at this table have a special interest in the well-being and welfare of the
Mr. FRANK. You are not answering my question.
Page 41 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Mr. KMIEC. I am answering your question directly
Mr. FRANK. No, you are not.
Mr. KMIEC. If you wish to use a political polemic
Mr. FRANK. You are evading the question. The question is, how does it hurt their ability to do that if a Christian has to hire Jews, if Jews have to hire Protestants, and Protestants have to hire Catholicshow does that hurt them in the performance of their mission?
Mr. KMIEC. Well, it hurts them in this sense. It fundamentally changes who they are. Congressman Scott said it very well in his opening remarks and questions, and I know he has serious questions about these constitutional issues as well. But one of the things he said very thoughtfully is that people come to religious leaders in their community because they trust them, because they do good, because they are the cement of families and the things of community. These people who are those religious leaders cannot just shed their religious
Mr. FRANK. Excuse me, but
Mr. GREEN. The gentleman's time has expired.
Mr. Scott of Georgia?
Mr. FRANK. Will the gentleman yield to me for 30 seconds, please?
Mr. GREEN. Mr. Scott?
Mr. SCOTT. Yes, I would be glad to yield.
Mr. FRANK. Thank you. I just want to point out how totally non-responsive that answer was. Of course, these are good people. In fact, one, two said they did not have to discriminate. You are imputing to them, frankly, something I would not impute to them. You are telling us that for them to be able to do their mission and remain true to their religion, they have to say that there is something wrong with associating with people of other religions. I find that frankly much more anti-religious than any other criticisms I have heard, that somehow if you are going to be a religious institution, it is not enough to have co-religionists in your worship; it is not enough to have co-religionists in your religious community; but when you then decide to perform a secular function, being forced to associate with non-believers somehow detracts. I find that a very odd way to defend religious leaders.
Page 42 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 I thank the gentleman for yielding.
Mr. SCOTT. Thank you very much. You are certainly welcome.
My concern is trying to figure out exactly why these proposed changes are being offered. It seems to me that these restrictions and these regulations were written into the HUD requirements for a very important reason, and that was to maintain that very important separation of church and state. Now, if you could answer for me, of what value and why would we want to remove the requirement that employment be religious neutral? Why would we want to require that the person being employed must be a member of that church or that organization or that religion, when in effect this is not private money, but all of the people's money from all of the different religions made up in this wonderful United States? Why is that of benefit? Why do we need to do that? Why do we need to change this rule?
Mr. KMIEC. I do not really think we are changing the rule, in fairness, congressman. I think what we are doing is applying the principle of Title VII that as very carefully, as Congressman Waters pointed out before, navigated the two provisions that are in the Constitution. We have to remember that the Constitution does not have a separation of church and state. It has two simultaneous guarantees of free exercise of belief and practice, as well as, as the reverend said before me, protection against an establishment of religion. So my direct answer to your question, congressman, would be this. We do not ask other citizens to shed their most fundamental beliefs to participate in Federal programs. These citizens you have before you raise money from private sources as well as public sources. They ought to have both available to them to do good work. They should not have to fundamentally go through a metamorphosis and to deny who they are in order to qualify.
Mr. SCOTT. But aren't they able to do that now? For example, the rule that we are trying to remove states this. It says a primarily religious organization receiving funds under the program will not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment under the program on the basis of religion, and will not limit employment or give preference in employment to persons on the basis of religion. It does not say you cannot do one or the other.
Page 43 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 It seems to me that this is a very carefully worded, fair placement in the rules to allow you to do exactly what you want to do, but it also prevents you from discriminating. That is the rub here.
Mr. KMIEC. I certainly agree with regard to any of the other prohibited categories that we find, for example, in executive order 11246, and nothing that HUD has proposed here would invite any form of racial discrimination, national origin discrimination and so forth. But we have a special constitutional protection for freedom of belief. I think what HUD's regulations very thoughtfully are trying to do is to say, in regard to that special protection, we are saying to these people they do not have to change their character.
Congressman Waters, again, asked one of the witnesses if he had ever applied for a Community Development Block Grant. The fact of the matter is, as I understand it, the statutes that frame that program have a specific provision in it that say recipients, contractors thereunder, will not discriminate on the basis or draw distinctions on the basis of religion. Well, if the reverend wanted to accept those monieshe indicated that he never hadit would fundamentally change the nature of the organization that he represents.
Mr. SCOTT. Let me ask this, if I may, Mr. Chairman, what are some of the problems that you are experiencing now that requires us to mandate these changes? To my way of reading this, it clearly would remove
Mr. GREEN. The gentleman's time has expired.
Mr. SCOTT. Ten seconds pleasea much needed protection against discrimination. I cannot get an answer to why we are doing this. If we could get some answers, if we could get some reasons, if we could get some evidence that showed this is what we are trying to get to, to remove
Mr. GREEN. The gentleman's has expired.
The gentleman from North Carolina, Mr. Watt, is recognized for five minutes.
Page 44 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Mr. WATT. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I am going to try assiduously to follow my wife's lesson.
Mr. KMIEC. I already violated that.
Mr. WATT. No, no. If you would just stay out of this, I think I can do it a lot easier.
Because I think I see everybody else on this panel kind of moving away from you. You have marginalized yourself so much that I cannot imagine that there is anybody else on this panel that agrees with what you say. If there is, I am going to give them a chance to tell me that, but I am going to do it without getting stressed out and aggravated.
Mr. KMIEC. Thank you for that vote of confidence.
Mr. WATT. Let me just pose this simple hypothetical. You have an after school program that the Federal government is trying to teach kids to read better. And the most qualified teacher to teach the child to read happens to be a person who is not affiliated with your denomination. You have somebody in your denomination, your church, your congregation that, if you just look at him, somebody outside your congregation is better qualified to teach that courseteach the child to read. Is there anybody on this panel other than Mr. Kmiec who believes that you ought to be allowed to discriminate against that better qualified teacher because they are not a member of your denomination or your congregation? Anybody else on this panel take that position?
Reverend WALKER. Assuming there is government funding.
Mr. WATT. Assuming government funding, yes.
Reverend WALKER. If they are living off the collection plate, certainly Title VII
Page 45 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Mr. WATT. Right, right. Title VII applies to you in your religious activities. You know, you are exempt. You obviously are not going to hire a Jewish rabbi to preach at a Baptist Church. That is what that was designed to do.
Well, I mean, not on an ongoing basis. You invite him in as a guest minister, but I just want to know, is there anybody on this panel who thinks you ought to be able to discriminate against the most qualified person to teach that after school program.
Bishop DANIELS. Could I just respond?
Mr. WATT. Yes, sir.
Bishop DANIELS. I think that if you just contain it to the question of the most qualified person to teach is just one thing. But there is a whole other dynamic in faith-based in the real world, and that is very possibly the person that also teaches may also have to be the person that will have to open the door and close the door, and take care of the property and answer to. So there are a lot of components that may be included in that, rather than just that one
Mr. WATT. So basically what you are saying is you would redefine the job and maybe make it more inclusive, so that the person that you were interviewing may not be the most qualified person after you added all that criteria. I understand that. I mean, I am not trying to get you around that. But there is something that Mr. Kmiec said that I just fundamentally disagree with. This thingshedding their fundamental beliefsI mean, we quit allowing people who had racist views to carry out their fundamental beliefs. I mean, it is illegal. Do you understand what I am saying?
Mr. GREEN. The gentleman's time has expired.
The chair now recognizes the gentleman from Alabama, Mr. Davis, for five minutes.
Mr. DAVIS. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Page 46 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Let me pick up on the hypothetical from Mr. Watt. Let me go to his Catholic day care school that he talked about. Does anyone on this panel believe that if, let's say hypothetically, a Catholic day care school accepted money from the Federal government, but if say a Southern Baptist family from Alabama moved into the neighborhood and the child from the Southern Baptist family wanted to go to that Catholic day care center, does anybody think that if that institution was getting public money they ought to be able to keep that child out?
Okay. As we say in the courtroom, let the record reflect nobody agreed with that. So given that, now let's expand that hypothetical. Let's say that a whole bunch of Southern Baptists or a whole bunch of Jewish children moved into the neighborhood around a Catholic day care center. And let's say that we got to the point where the only folk in the Catholic day care center were Southern Baptists and Jews. Does anybody on the panel think that if that Catholic day care center was getting public money, they ought to be able to throw out the Baptists and the Jews. Does anybody think that?
Okay. Let the record reflect nobody thinks that. So given that, if it does not fundamentally change, Mr. Kmiec, the nature of an institution if a Catholic day care center ends up servicing only Jews and Southern Baptists, how does it change their character if they end up hiring Jews and Southern Baptists?
Mr. KMIEC. Universities and day care centers and religious organizations create themselves because they have a body of belief that they want to propagate. They think it is very important. I suspect that if there is a Catholic day care center, as there are in many urban inner-city areas in this country, that their populations frequently are non-Catholic; it has turned out that the private schools that have stayed in the inner-city areas in this country have been the Catholic schools, in many cases, and oftentimes their students do not share Catholic belief. But the fact of the matter is that the priests and the brothers and the sisters who stay involved in that teaching, stay involved in that teaching because they believe their faith has something specific to say, even if there are nonbelievers in front of them. But they would not stay in the business if you told them that they could not share their religious beliefs with those people who come to them, whatever the religious perspectives of the students may be.
Page 47 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 Mr. DAVIS. Let me interrupt you just to make this point and move to my next question. I think what makes your position collapse when it relates to discrimination is a very basic point. If it does not change the character of an institution to make it serve people of a different faith, I find it impossible to see how the character of the institution is somehow contaminated if it has to absorb people of a different faith. Because you cannot make the Jews and Southern Baptists in that school believe whatever is being taught to them, but you still have to serve them. So if that, again, does not contaminate, I do not see why employment does.
Let me move to a totally separate point in the limited time that I have. What really bothers me about a lot of this is a very simple conundrum that I think a lot of the government would be faced with. As all of you know, it is difficult getting Federal grants under the best of circumstances. Now, if somebody does not get a Federal grant right now, they might think it is because they did not fill out their paperwork; they might think it is because of any number of reasons. If we move full-scale in the direction of these faith-based initiatives, if a given church does not get a grant, my concern is that that church will think that it somehow did not fit the state's test for religions, or that that church will think, well, we were not religious enough or holy enough. That perception that I think would exist with a lot of churches is, in my mind, one of the most pernicious things about this movement. Can any of you address that concernthe fact that even if we are not purporting to do it, we are possibly creating a perception that some churches are good enough and some churches are not; that some churches serve the state's mission and some churches do not. Can anybody address that issue?
Reverend ANTHONY. Congressman, I hear what you are saying, but I would come down in another perspective. I do not think it would be so much that we would think we are not holy enough, because politicians cannot determine our spirituality. I would simply say that many of us might think we are not political enough to the degree that the monies that have been allocated are connected to those who are friendly to those in Administrations that are doing the allocating. As for me and my house, we do have people there who are not of our faith and of our tradition. I think in many cases, churches may not even want folks who are members of the church because when it comes time to firing folk, you have to deal with their whole families. It creates a problem.
Page 48 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Segment 1 Of 2 And often we share congregations and denominations with different preachers and that sort of thing, but in terms of on Sunday morning, I am preaching Jesus. So you know that when you come. Now, on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday in terms of the church at work, that is through our community outreach center, that is through our housing program, whosoever will will come on Sunday morning, but you know what you are getting when you come there. So I think that the real rub is that may be those who take advantage of the fact that if you do not come down theologically the way I come, then you cannot play in the game. And that is where the problem is.
Mr. GREEN. The gentleman's time has expired.
I thank all the witnesses for their testimony today, and for their answering questions. The chair notes that some members may have additional questions for this panel that they may wish to submit in writing. Without objection, the hearing record will remain open for 30 days for members to submit written questions to these witnesses and to place their responses in the record.
Mr. FRANK. Mr. Chairman, also we have some statements from others that we would like to place in the record as well.
Mr. GREEN. Without objection.
The hearing is adjourned.
[Whereupon, at 4:55 p.m., the subcommittee was adjourned.]
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