Six Years Later
A Message from Peter Wolfgang
Today (July 1st) marks my 6th anniversary as Executive Director of the Family Institute of Connecticut, matching the number of years the position was held by my esteemed predecessor, Brian Brown.
I rarely get personal in FIC email alerts. It is usually all business, some impending crisis that FIC is seeking to avert or some fundraising goal that we are struggling to meet.
The July 1st anniversary email has always been an exception. It is one of the few times when I pause, take a deep breath, look around in amazement…and tell you how truly grateful I am to Divine Providence and the generosity of all of you for supporting FIC and for your confidence in me personally.
Last week I attended classes for pro-family executive directors at the headquarters of our parent organization, Focus on the Family. Focus conducts these professional development workshops for the executive directors of associated family policy councils like FIC every summer. This was the first time in the six years since I became executive director that FIC was able to have me attend.
This morning I was a guest on Jim Vicevich’s WTIC radio program, guest-hosted by CT Capitol Report’s Tom Dudchik. Tom interviewed me on Family Institute of Connecticut’s pro-family message for our state. He then spent the next three hours interviewing Connecticut’s top Republican leaders on their response to the Family Institute.
These are things that seemed impossible six years ago, when I became the head of FIC…never mind twelve years ago (half the lifetime of our 24-year-old organization) when Brian was hired! It was during the second twelve years of FIC’s existence – the Brian Brown/Peter Wolfgang era – that we have begun to see what FIC is capable of accomplishing.
Last week’s U.S. Supreme Court rulings are a reminder that most of my six years as Executive Director took place after the Connecticut Supreme Court imposed same-sex “marriage on our state–and that FIC experienced its biggest victories after our state’s highest court made that terrible ruling!
In 2009, we beat back a massive legislative attack on the Catholic Church, secured the strongest religious liberty protections against same-sex “marriage” in the nation and forced the State Department of Families and Children to stop sponsoring pro-homosexual religious workshops to Connecticut students.
In 2010, we helped the town of Enfield stand up to the ACLU over their right to hold a graduation in a Baptist church. (The principle we fought for in Enfield may still be upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court in a nearly identical case.)
In 2011, we fell three votes short of stopping Governor Malloy’s transgender Bathroom Bill, we secured what was essentially the first-ever public hearing on parental notification for minors seeking abortions and we helped force Hartford Public High School to require parental permission before exposing some students to a pro-homosexual play.
In 2012, we held more rallies and public speeches than ever before in an effort to educate the public about a federal abortion-drug mandate being imposed on religious institutions and believers…and we helped persuade an advisory committee in Connecticut to remove an abortion mandate from its health care recommendations.
In 2013, we crushed an effort to legalize assisted suicide. Here, available for the first time, is my testimony.
All of this is just the tip of the iceberg. It does not include the numerous speeches, marriage enrichment seminars, 40 Days for Life vigils and other public education and activist events FIC takes part in during the course of a year.
This is all because of you, our members. You are the ones who give us the tools to fight for you. You are the ones who answer the call when help is needed.
I cannot thank you enough…for everything. My favorite moments in this position are the emails, the handwritten notes, the people who stop me on the street or at a public event, to thank me for the work FIC does.
I read every one of those messages. And I want to thank YOU for making it possible, for being right there alongside my staff, my board of directors and me as we carry on the good fight for a better Connecticut. God bless you.