Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Why I don't support the "prayer in school" movement

The petitions come around every now and again, people wanting to get signatures to force the government to do something to “allow prayer in school.” And people are always shocked when I say that I don’t support that. “What? You don’t believe in prayer in school?” Of course, I do. I just don’t believe that prayer was ever taken out of school. And I don’t support any of the actions that government would take to try and “put it back.”

I don’t want the school system trying to teach my kids to pray. [There was a humorous article about this in John Clayton’s Does God Exist magazine (read it here).] The vast majority of teachers and administrators out there don’t believe as I do, and I don’t want them involved in the spiritual formation of my children. I will teach my kids to pray. We pray before they go to school. I teach them to pray at different times throughout the day. They need no permission from a teacher or anyone else to say a prayer. Believe me, as long as there are tests in school, there will be prayer in school!

I’m much more interested in getting prayer in our homes. If our families are praying with their kids (not just at mealtime!), if kids see their parents turn to God in times of crisis and in times of joy, there will be no need for a “moment of silence” at school. The kids will pray.

Forget the “prayer in school” movement. Let’s work on the “prayer at home” movement.

Teachers don’t bother to make my kids pray,
Their prayers will be there, can’t take them away.
Keep your Hail Marys and“Allah be blest”s
Our kids will be praying as long as there’s tests!

1 comment:

lisa leichner said...

Tim, I like you more and more with each post I read. I am all for building our families better and THEN seeing a better country. When we try to support government action in the hopes that our families and schools will then change, we are working backwards. I hadn't read that article by Clayton, but I think it's both funny and absolutely true.
(Sorry for commenting on an old post, but I really liked this one)