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Palin Speaks to 16,000 at Women of Joy Conference in Louisville, Kentucky

Posted by Dr. Fay on April 17, 2010

Governor Palin encouraged women in their faith at a conference of evangelical women in Louisville, Kentucky on Friday night. Peter Smith at The Courier-Journal reports:

Sarah Palin told a Freedom Hall crowd of about 16,000 Friday night that she was there to inspire women in their faith, not to talk politics.

But the 2008 Republican candidate for vice president acknowledged she couldn’t help but do the latter, saying politics “courses through my veins.

And Palin — now a best-selling author and headline speaker at tea-party tax protests — did plenty of both in the course of her nearly hour-long talk at an evangelical Christian women’s conference.

This nation needs you,” Palin told the women. “Know the facts. Stand for what’s right. Don’t be discouraged by the mocking of those who want to claim we just cling to our religion. I’m the first to admit — yeah, I do cling to my faith. That’s all I’ve got.”

Palin mixed stories of personal struggles, calls for women to be good mothers and good citizens and criticism of President Barack Obama — without ever mentioning him by name.

She asked for the women — who greeted her with an enthusiastic standing ovation — to provide a “prayer shield” to strengthen her against what she said was “deception” in the media.

She denounced this week’s Wisconsin federal court ruling that government observance of a National Day of Prayer was unconstitutional — which the crowd joined in booing. She asserted that America needs to get back to its Christian roots and rejected any notion that “God should be separated from the state.”

“Hearing any leader declare that America isn’t a Christian nation and poking at allies like Israel in the eye — it is mind-boggling to see some of our nation’s actions recently, but politics truly is a topic for another day,” Palin said.

That was allusion to an Obama speech on the shared values of America’s various religious groups and to his administration’s criticism of Israel expanding settlements in occupied territories.

Palin spoke for nearly an hour at the start of a three-day Women of Joy conference, one of a series of three-day women’s conferences held in various cities and featuring Christian speakers, musicians, comedians and others.

Phil Waldrep, whose ministry sponsors the conferences, said before introducing Palin that it would not be “a political rally.”

Rather, Waldrep said, Palin would encourage fellow mothers and others by speaking as someone who has demonstrated that “being pro-life for Sarah Palin was not a political position, it was a spiritual conviction.” Palin chose to bear her baby Trig in 2008 despite his prenatal diagnosis with Down syndrome.

“We thought she would be a very good fit for us,” Waldrep said. “There are a lot of women today who have special-needs children, such as with autism or Down syndrome.”

Palin said she struggled to maintain those convictions at the time, urgently praying that God would spare her child from the diagnosis. But she recalled looking out her Anchorage, Alaska, office on a snowy day and getting a doctor’s call confirming it.

“I had nowhere else to go… but prayer,” she said.

But when she held Trig after his birth, she was convinced they did the right thing. “Choosing life may not be the easiest path, but it really is the right path,” she said.

Special-needs children “make the world a better place,” Palin said. “It’s our job to make the world a more welcoming place for them.”

[…]

Tickets for the event sold quickly after Palin was announced as a speaker in earlier this year. Last year, the event drew about 5,000, Waldrep said.

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