DES MOINES, Iowa – U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was the last speaker on Friday at the Family Leadership Summit held at the Ron Parson Center in West Des Moines, Iowa.
The event is hosted annually by The FAMiLY Leader, a Christian organization whose mission is to “strengthen families by inspiring Christ-like leadership in the home, the church, and the government.”
Pompeo addressed a group of 650 in-person, the reduced capacity for the room in response to COVID-19, and approximately 300 viewers who purchased tickets to watch online.
He said that the U.S. State Department represents the principles of those in attendance.
“We’ve executed a foreign policy that American families in Des Moines, in Dubuque, and in Davenport can believe in. It’s a pro-national security foreign policy focused on America. It’s a pro-religious freedom foreign policy. And it’s a 100 percent pro-life foreign policy,” Pompeo said to applause.
As an evangelical Christian, he talked about how his faith in Jesus Christ impacted his work as Secretary of State.
“I think too about my responsibilities in light of the biblical call to be a good steward of whatever you have. 1 Corinthians 4 says that: ‘Those who have been given a trust must prove faithful.’ And God has entrusted this position to me for this time. And I feel every day the duty to honor that calling,” Pompeo said.
He explained how his faith impacts his decision-making.
“Stewarding my position well also means making decisions based on the truth. Our God is indeed a god of truth. And we should every day seek to reflect His character in that regard,” Pompeo said.
He discussed his work defending religious freedom.
“Right now, four out of five people around the world don’t enjoy full religious freedom, and we’re fighting tooth and nail to change that,” Pompeo said.
He talked about a new religious freedom training program for foreign service officers, calling out China of its abuses of Christians and minority Muslims, and hosting the first-ever Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom at the State Department.
Pompeo said that event hosted government and religious leaders from all over the world it was the largest human rights conference ever held at the State Department.
He turned his attention to abortion.
“Our ability to defend these rights abroad must begin with our own powerful example here at home. America sets the tone for the rest of the world in this respect, and our administration has defended the rights of unborn like no other administration in history,” Pompeo said. “Abortion quite simply isn’t a human right. It takes a human life.”
“You all – you all know this. The Psalmist says in Psalm 139: ‘You knit me together in my mother’s womb.’ This is when life begins, full stop,” he added.
Pompeo discussed the Trump Administration reimplementing the Mexico City Policy and mobilizing a coalition of 20 nations to criticize the United Nations’ pro-abortion language.
In closing, he discussed America’s legacy.
“Why is it that America is unrivaled in our commitment to freedom? I think I know an answer. Our founders built our country on a commitment to essential rights, unalienable rights… that come from these amazing documents, our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution, and our nation’s foreign policy must be grounded in those central understanding,” Pompeo said.
He said that commitment had made the United States a “shining star of Liberty around the world.”
“As Secretary of State, upholding this legacy is an enormous privilege. It is no easy task. But I’m leaning on my faith each and every day to help me try to get it right,” Pompeo stated.
Watch his full speech below: