Why can’t we just vote on whether we pray to Jesus at legislative sessions? – By Dahlia Lithwick – Slate Magazine.
Why can’t we just vote on whether we pray to Jesus at county board meetings?
Posted Thursday, Aug. 4, 2011, at 6:08 PM ET
On December 17, 2007, Janet Joyner and Constance Lynn Blackmon decided to attend a meeting of the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners. Like all public Board meetings, the gathering began with an invocation delivered by a local religious leader. And like almost every previous invocation, that prayer closed with the phrase, “For we do make this prayer in Your Son Jesus’ name, Amen.”
So begins Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III, writing in Joyner v. Forsyth County, a 2-1 decision invalidating the Board of Commissioners of Forsyth County, N.C.’s policy of beginning legislative meetings with prayers—more often than not, prayers offered in Jesus’ name.
Concluding last week that the board’s policy of inviting local religious leaders to offer sectarian invocations prior to legislative sessions runs afoul of both the Constitution’s Establishment Clause and years of Supreme Court precedent, the majority of the three-judge panel of the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals determined that the policy could not stand. Before the federal appeals court arrived at this conclusion, a magistrate judge had also concluded that the prayers “display[ed] a preference for Christianity over other religions by the government” and “affiliate[d] the Board with a specific faith or belief.” A federal district judge agreed, finding that the policy violated the Establishment Clause and enjoining the board from continuing the sectarian prayers.
Read the full story here: Slate Magazine
That’s what the San Antonio Express-News call the Pope’ new commandment fot priests, when he recommended priests use all multimedia tools at their disposal to preach the Gospel and engage in dialogue with people of other religions and cultures.
cf. San Antonio Express-News, Sunday, January 23, 2010, p. 6A
“Wish you had a podcast of your pastor’s Sunday sermon to download while grabbing a cup of coffee? Or take a glance at the church’s Facebook wall while waiting in the grocery line?
There’s an app for that — at Trinity Baptist Church.
The 60-year-old congregation near downtown is believed to be the first church in San Antonio and among a growing number nationwide to offer the popular iPhone software application.”
“A story based on the Three Little Pigs fairy tale has been turned down by a government agency’s awards panel as the subject matter could offend Muslims. The digital book, re-telling the classic story, was rejected by judges who warned that ‘the use of pigs raises cultural issues’.”
cf. BBC online news
This, to my mind, is political correctness taken too far and smacks of censorship.
In a way, the views of British MP Mark Pritchett about attempts to move Christianity to the “margins” of British life [see BBC online news] fit in nicely with the previous post.
According to the Guardian Wrap there are plans by Mid Yorkshire NHS Trust to turn the beds of Muslim patients towards Mecca five times a day if they request it and a look at the Trust’s website confirmed that this is already being done at one hospital at least: to my mind another example of political correctness gone too far.