ACLU Withdraws Lawsuit As Locality Invites Volunteers to Pray

In Missouri, the American Civil Liberties Union has withdrawn legal action seeking to stop the Franklin County Commission from offering invocations before its meetings.  The ACLU had filed suit in federal district court last summer claiming that prayers amounted to an establishment of religion.

The ACLU initiated the lawsuit after sending a letter to the County Commission demanding that the commissioners halt the practice of offering invocations altogether, or failing to do so, limit the practice to “non-sectarian” prayers.

According to an article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the ACLU had filed the lawsuit on behalf of an anonymous citizen.

Instead of backing down, the Franklin County Commission adopted a policy formalizing the procedures for prayer before Commission meetings.  The new guidelines reflected recommendations from the Alliance Defending Freedom, the nation’s leading Christian legal defense firm. As you can imagine, though, any policy acceptable to the ACLU will necessarily force the government to invite prayers offered to false gods, pagan deities and perhaps even to satan.

With the new policy, volunteers will be asked to pray without regard to their religious views. The Post-Dispatch article says, “volunteers can’t use the opportunity to proselytize or disparage other faiths. If they do, they’ll be banned from praying publicly in the future.”

R.J. Matson/Post-Dispatch, June 14, 2012

A blog entry posted by Franklin County Democrats speculates the Presiding Commissioner agreed to the new policy because he “seems to be banking on the idea that most people on those sign up sheets will be offering Christian prayers. He may regret that.”

The ACLU stands ready to proceed with litigation if only Christian prayers are offered in the future.


John 14:6 (NKJV):
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”

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