Mississippi will have a new state flag design before the end of this year, and the new design must include the words “In God We Trust.”
On July 1, Mississippi’s state flag, a design adopted in 1894 that included the controversial Confederate battle emblem, was retired.
Among the leading voices that called for the former flag’s removal were representatives of the Mississippi Baptist Convention.
“Our position on this is motivated by our understanding of the teaching of Jesus Christ,” said Shawn Parker, executive director and treasurer of the Mississippi Baptist Convention.
The MBC’s rejection of symbols of the Confederacy echoed a resolution passed by messengers of the Southern Baptist Convention’s 2016 annual meeting, titled “On Sensitivity And Unity Regarding The Confederate Battle Flag.”
“In God We Trust” was added to Mississippi’s state seal in 2014. Mississippi legislators have stipulated the new flag design must also include the words.
The inclusion of the phrase has wide support in Mississippi despite criticism from national religious freedom organizations. (TAB/RNS)