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Silence, confusion or heritage — what's best?

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Posted: Friday, June 26, 2009 10:00 pm

The prayer of invocation at the City Council meeting is now under fire.

Prayer, by definition, is communication with God. Those who pray are not talking to people or seeking man's approval of their words, but are talking to God. An invocation that is pre-approved by the City Council or is selected from a standard list of approved prayers is ridiculous.

Some have suggested a moment of silence before the meetings. In this way, people can pray to Jesus, Allah, Shiva, the great cosmic force in the universe or Great Aunt Ethel.

Maybe I'm wrong, but a moment of silence seems like an inoffensive, politically correct exercise to keep everybody happy. Government bodies that use this are trying to ease their consciences by invoking help from someone (whoever he/she/it is) to get them out of the messes they find themselves in.

The News-Sentinel, in its editorial, made the flawed suggestion of having individuals from different faiths take turns giving the invocation. As one who has studied world religions, I can say with certainty that they have very little in common theologically. The definitions of God, salvation, heaven, sin, etc., are very different.

The popular statements: "We all believe in the same deity but have different names for him," and, "There are different roads on the mountain, but they all lead to the same place," are intellectual suicide. These statements sound good and make people feel warm and cozy, but they are just not true. Having various faiths praying is an exercise in confusion.

America was founded on Christian principles found in the Bible, not Islamic principles found in the Quran, Sikh principles found in the Ad Granth, Hindu principles found in the Vedas or Buddhist principles found in the various Sutras. This is historical fact, regardless of what historical revisionists say.

This is America and people have the freedom to worship as they choose, but our foundation rests on Christianity, and our Christian heritage compels us to pray in Jesus' name. If this offends anyone, then just skip the invocation.

Frank Nolton

Woodbridge

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