New Delhi-Over 20 lawyers from across the country met together to formulate the Memorandum of Association and the Rules & Regulations of the Christian Legal Association (CLA) on the 13th of March, 2004 at the CNI Bhawan, under the auspices of the Evangelical Fellowship of India, (EFI). Rev. Richard Howell, the General Secretary of the EFI chaired the meeting.
Giving a brief history of the genesis of the CLA, he said that the CLA was conceived at the "AICOCIM '99" when Christian leaders expressed the need for a legal society which would advocate for human rights, the rights of the minority community in particular.
In the years to follow, the CLA was given a more definite shape. Now, a Chapter has been started in Orissa where approximately 50 lawyers meet regularly for prayer and fellowship. Numerous cases have also been taken up by the lawyers in Orissa to defend missionaries targeted under the Orissa Freedom of Religion Act.
As an interdenominational society the membership of the CLA is open to legal professionals and social workers. Provision has also been made to include students of law and other related organisations within its fold. CLA's aim is to provide a platform where legal remedies may be provided for a variety of issues faced by the minority community and to advocate freedom of conscience, biblical conflict reconciliation, social justice, religious liberty and sanctity of human life. CLA also aims at encouraging lawyers to live out their Christian faith.
The members present on the 13th of March expressed a keen desire to take up the cause of the persecuted church and hoped that Christian persecution, especially in far flung areas of the country, would be redressed. They also hoped that regional chapters would soon be started thereby making the CLA an effective body to redress local and regional issues.
With the registration of the CLA under way, one can hope that issues affecting the church in particular and human rights in general will be redressed more effectively by the legal fraternity of the body of Christ.
By our special correspondent
Christian Lawyers form a society
Published 18 March 2004 | Christian Today