The Palmetto Family Rally at the Statehouse 2018 attracted over 350 Christians to the South Carolina Statehouse to defend life, end human trafficking and help make the Palmetto State a great place to raise a family.

As the 2018 South Carolina legislative session enters its final stage, hundreds of South Carolina Christians rallied at the Statehouse on April 10th to make their voices heard on the issues of life, human trafficking, medical marijuana and other issues currently being debated.

The rally – the first-ever Palmetto Family Rally at the Statehouse – attracted over 350 Christians from all over South Carolina. The purpose of the rally was to ensure that Christian voices were heard on the important issues still facing the South Carolina Legislature.

The attendees gathered on the South steps of the Statehouse to hear from several speakers during the opening program. After opening in prayer, the program was kicked off by Erik Corcoran, the director of Palmetto Family’s Nehemiah Network. Mr. Corcoran encouraged the crowd not to be bashful about their beliefs, but that South Carolina needs Christians to be active: “You are standing on the grounds of government in your state, and it’s time for God’s people to be on these grounds a whole lot more. God wants to heal South Carolina.”

Following Mr. Corcoran’s address, Joe Mack of the South Carolina Baptist Convention briefed the crowd on the dangers of medical marijuana. Mr. Mack also expressed his belief that, though the battle never ends, Christians must not grow weary in the fight for what’s right when he said that, “when we win, we only win for one year, but when they win, they win forever.”

In addition to Mr. Mack, Bob Healy of Lighthouse for Life discussed a bill that would discourage human trafficking in South Carolina, and Lisa Van Riper of South Carolina Citizens for Life explained why Christians must put all their energy into banning dismemberment abortions in South Carolina.

The crowd then made the short walk to the Statehouse lobby and flooded the lobby between the Senate and House chambers in preparation to meet with their legislators. Many had the opportunity to personally encourage their legislators to make decisions that would move South Carolina in a biblical and family-friendly direction.

The impact was felt all throughout the Statehouse.

“Holding rallies and visiting with lawmakers in support of an issue or cause demonstrates dedication and commitment to be part of ‘We the People’ in a positive, collaborative way,” said Rep. Shannon Erickson who was present at the rally. “As an elected official, personal visits and rallies allow me to hear and be part of the process alongside the citizens I am honored to serve.”

The impact wasn’t just felt by South Carolina legislators, though. The hundreds of Christians who attended found value in the rally, as Pastor Carl Broggi of Community Bible Church in Beaufort, South Carolina expressed:

“The rally was a huge success for at least three reasons. Number one, it put our state leaders on alert that evangelical Christians are concerned about moral issues that have entered into the political realm and that we are watching how they are voting. Number two, it made those attending more aware of the potential impact that we can have by just letting our voice be heard. Number three, I believe it started a new movement that will serve as a catalyst in churches across our state for Christians at the very least to call their senators and representatives on issues that intersect with our faith. But also, as needed on occasion, to make our presence physically felt in the state house as we pray for our leaders and as we express our concerns to them.”

The South Carolina Legislature is scheduled to end this year’s legislative session on May 10th.

Briley Hughes

Communications Director