Faithful America was founded in 2004. We are the largest online community of Christians putting faith into action for social justice. Our members are sick of sitting by quietly while Jesus' message of good news is hijacked by the religious right to serve a hateful political agenda. We're organizing the faithful to challenge such extremism and renew the church's prophetic role in building a more free and just society.
We raise our collective voices through rapid-response campaigns that tap into the grassroots power of Christians across the nation. When corporations and religious institutions invoke religious freedom as a justification for bigotry and discrimination, we speak up. When hate groups purport to speak for Christianity, we act. We stand with our Catholic members to challenge the Catholic hierarchy in the United States to live up to the inspiring words of Pope Francis. We stick up for courageous Christian voices acting for fairness and freedom in every denomination, and we work together for immigrant and refugee rights, climate justice, and full LGBTQ inclusion, among other important social and economic justice issues.
Faithful America is an independent 501(c)4 not-for-profit organization. We are not affiliated with any church or denomination. Our members come from many denominations; are both lay and ordained; and live in every state, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia. At this time, 100% of our funding comes from our members -- from individual grassroots donations. If you are appalled by the right’s unchristian agenda and yearn to reclaim the prophetic role that Christian faith has historically played, we’d love to have your support!
Working together, Faithful America members have:
Convinced Google to Drop World Vision: When World Vision - one of the world’s largest Christian relief and development organizations - announced plans to stop discriminating against gay and lesbians, they were met with a furious outcry from the religious right. World Vision quickly reversed themselves - so more than 17,000 Faithful America members called on Google to find new Christian partners that don’t discriminate. Within days, Google’s director of corporate giving resigned from World Vision’s board of directors.
Pressured MSNBC into Dropping the Family Research Council: FRC, which the Southern Poverty Law Center named a hate group for spreading outrageous lies about lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people, has long exerted a poisonous influence in the media. Seeking to delegitimize the FRC as legitimate representative of the faith community, we mobilized more than 20,000 members in a sustained months-long campaign -- including petitions, phone calls, and in-person events -- that ultimately pressured MSNBC to stop inviting the FRC’s president, Tony Perkins, on the air.
Helped Students Win Justice for Fired Principal: When hundreds of students walked out of class to protest the firing of a gay vice-principal at a Seattle-area Catholic high school, we amplified their message with 20,000 petition signatures delivered to the archbishop’s doorstep. Within days the school’s president resigned (even while a lesbian teacher came out and kept her job), sending a potent message to Catholic schools nationwide.
Defeated the Fracking Industry: When the Sisters of Loretto, a Roman Catholic order in Kentucky, refused to allow the fracking industry to build a dangerous pipeline on their land, 30,000 Faithful America members joined in signing a petition in solidarity. The state’s religious leaders delivered the petition to the governor’s office, making state and national headlines—and plans for the pipeline were eventually halted.
Fought Back Against Hobby Lobby: After Hobby Lobby filed a lawsuit claiming a religious objection to providing insurance coverage for contraception, we delivered tens of thousands of petition signatures to their corporate headquarters in Oklahoma City. Our spokesperson was a local evangelical pastor who was dramatically turned away by corporate security—resulting in some of the earliest national media coverage demonstrating Christian opposition to the “religious freedom” attack on birth control. Later, we held a vigil outside of Hobby Lobby corporate headquarters the night after the Supreme Court announced its decision in the case.
Defended an Unjustly-Defrocked Pastor: Pennsylvania United Methodist pastor Frank Schaefer was put on trial and defrocked for officiating at the wedding of his gay son. But after local Methodists made headlines with a petition signed by 35,000 Faithful America members, his bishop publicly committed to do everything in her power to prevent future trials, helping prompt other bishops to make the same promise. (Schaefer’s defrocking was ultimately overturned on appeal.)
Since July 1, 2019, Faithful America's campaigns have been led by our campaigns director, the Rev. Nathan Empsall.
Rev. Nathan is an Episcopal priest, veteran digital organizer, and dual-degree master's graduate of Yale Divinity School and the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. He has previously served as an online campaigner for the Sierra Club and Organizing for America, among other advocacy organizations. He is the founding editor of the independent Facebook page and website Episcopal Climate News, a volunteer member of his denomination's Task Force on Care of Creation and Environmental Racism, and a part-time parish priest.
(Although Rev. Nathan is personally an ordained Episcopal priest, Faithful America is independent and not affiliated with the Episcopal Church or any other denomination.)
Rev. Nathan took over from Michael Sherrard, who was recognized for his work at Faithful America as one of “14 Faith Leaders to Watch in 2014” by the Center for American Progress. We remain deeply grateful to Michael for so much hard work and success during his more than seven years at our helm.