Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Prayer in School - Mt. Juliet, Tennessee

Lakeview Elementary in Mt. Juliet Tennessee is back in the news over the issue of prayer in school. A protest rally opposing the lawsuit by the ACLU is planned for 6pm, Oct. 24. Read the story here.

Since this is my first post about prayer in school, let me say a few words about my position on prayer in school. As a Christian, my first thought is, "gee, prayer in school is a great idea... we need to be teaching our children a healthy spirituality!" What I'm assuming, however, is that the prayer led by the teacher would be a Christian prayer led by a Christian teacher. Now, living in the South, chances are that might be a good possibility. But what if the teacher is not Christian and is in effect teaching my child to practice another religion that I find really objectionable? What if the school is leading them in a weak, generic prayer that suggests that it doesn't really matter who you are praying to, just that you go through the motions? What if the prayer time is just that, going through the motions with no real heartfelt faith driving it, so my child is learning that prayer is just some empty formality that we do? See the problem? I believe it is essential to teach our children about prayer, and to lead them in praying. That is my job, both as a parent and a pastor.

It is essential that we teach our children to pray, and to guide them into a faith that is both sensitive and authentic. Leaving that to become the job of the public school system is a tragic abdication of my faithful responsibility as a Christian parent.

Today, please pray again for the students, faculty and parents in Mt. Juliet, and pray that our students may grow into an authentic spirituality. Pray also for the students, teachers and parents of a school near you. Pray. Teach your children to pray. Live out your faith.
Brother Ed


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