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Christians successfully restore prayer to board meetings

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The Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners has voted to restore prayer to open meetings.

In 2004, two members of the board decided they were offended with Christian prayer and successfully lobbied fellow members to open instead with a moment of silence. The Christian Family Coalition got to work and one of the hostile members was replaced with a Christian, as spokesman Anthony Verdugo explains.

Verdugo

"To eliminate religious speech in the form of solemnizing the prayer is discrimination, and so what we told the commissioners is all we want to do is restore free-speech rights and restore speech equality so that everyone can speak openly and freely so long as it's civil discourse," he tells OneNewsNow.

The commission voted 8-3 to restore prayer prior to the roll call for the meeting.

"We are a metropolitan area, but we also have to be an inclusive and welcoming community and we talk about being inclusive and welcoming and tolerant," he says. "That includes people of faith also because we too are part of this community. We're not isolated from it, so our free-speech rights must also be respected and upheld."

Under the policy, the commissioners will select on a rotating basis someone from the area to conduct the prayer -- or commissioners themselves can elect to offer the prayer.

source

by on Dec. 9, 2012 at 7:24 AM
Replies (331-340):
12hellokitty
by Ruby Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 10:40 AM

Seriously?  Your comment shows you really have no idea what you are talking about.  The opening prayer is a short general, prayer, it is not a worship service, or altar call. 

Curious if those of you who oppose the thought of an opening prayer, also oppose reciting The Pledge of Allegiance at public meetings?  I'm curious because there have been some recent incedents of radical liberals holding public office that have tried to do away with saying TPOA at public meetings.  It seems the people who fear prayer also fear TPOA.    


 

Quoting ChutterButter:

Would you feel the same way if they broke out their candles, altar, and tools and opened a circle? What if they wanted to chant and dance around the room? Would that also not constitute free speech? Would it be considered disrespectful or rude if someone in the room said their own prayer aloud to another god during this time?

Quoting 12hellokitty:

 

No they wished to practice their Constitutional right to free speech.  Trying to silence their free speech is infringing upon their rights.  Those who don't wish to participate can close their ears...

Quoting romalove:

They wished to pray organized without regards for anyone else.

Quoting 12hellokitty:

 


Quoting romalove:


If I was a praying person and I lived there I would be praying for county commissioners who understood the First Amendment and that they were elected to serve all the people of their district, and not just the Christians.


They had free speech rights to pray during the moment of silence, however they wished to.  Now they took away the free speech rights of anyone who doesn't want to pray the same way.


Just completely stupid.  


No it didn't.  It was forcing them to pray in silence, which was not how they wished to pray... 

 



Clynn301
by Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 10:52 AM

throwing up

ChutterButter
by Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 11:14 AM
1 mom liked this

I do indeed have an idea what I am talking about. I get what you are saying about the altar and circle so put that aside. Chanting and dancing are how many other religions choose to 'pray'. I do not fear prayer. I simply wish for the same regard and respect as others. This is a country of many religions. It is unfair for any form of government to show biast towards one over the many others. You yourself used the word 'general'. I do not like this term as it implies that encompasses everyone when in fact it does not. Many beliefs are excluded. No one's freedom of speech or religion or right to seperation of church and state is more important than another's.

Quoting 12hellokitty:

Seriously?  Your comment shows you really have no idea what you are talking about.  The opening prayer is a short general, prayer, it is not a worship service, or altar call. 

Curious if those of you who oppose the thought of an opening prayer, also oppose reciting The Pledge of Allegiance at public meetings?  I'm curious because there have been some recent incedents of radical liberals holding public office that have tried to do away with saying TPOA at public meetings.  It seems the people who fear prayer also fear TPOA.    


 

Quoting ChutterButter:

Would you feel the same way if they broke out their candles, altar, and tools and opened a circle? What if they wanted to chant and dance around the room? Would that also not constitute free speech? Would it be considered disrespectful or rude if someone in the room said their own prayer aloud to another god during this time?

Quoting 12hellokitty:


No they wished to practice their Constitutional right to free speech.  Trying to silence their free speech is infringing upon their rights.  Those who don't wish to participate can close their ears...

Quoting romalove:

They wished to pray organized without regards for anyone else.

Quoting 12hellokitty:



Quoting romalove:


If I was a praying person and I lived there I would be praying for county commissioners who understood the First Amendment and that they were elected to serve all the people of their district, and not just the Christians.


They had free speech rights to pray during the moment of silence, however they wished to.  Now they took away the free speech rights of anyone who doesn't want to pray the same way.


Just completely stupid.  


No it didn't.  It was forcing them to pray in silence, which was not how they wished to pray... 





12hellokitty
by Ruby Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 11:23 AM

What religion/s are you referring to? 


 

Quoting ChutterButter:

I do indeed have an idea what I am talking about. I get what you are saying about the altar and circle so put that aside. Chanting and dancing are how many other religions choose to 'pray'.I do not fear prayer. I simply wish for the same regard and respect as others. This is a country of many religions. It is unfair for any form of government to show biast towards one over the many others. You yourself used the word 'general'. I do not like this term as it implies that encompasses everyone when in fact it does not. Many beliefs are excluded. No one's freedom of speech or religion or right to seperation of church and state is more important than another's.

Quoting 12hellokitty:

Seriously?  Your comment shows you really have no idea what you are talking about.  The opening prayer is a short general, prayer, it is not a worship service, or altar call. 

Curious if those of you who oppose the thought of an opening prayer, also oppose reciting The Pledge of Allegiance at public meetings?  I'm curious because there have been some recent incedents of radical liberals holding public office that have tried to do away with saying TPOA at public meetings.  It seems the people who fear prayer also fear TPOA.    


 

Quoting ChutterButter:

Would you feel the same way if they broke out their candles, altar, and tools and opened a circle? What if they wanted to chant and dance around the room? Would that also not constitute free speech? Would it be considered disrespectful or rude if someone in the room said their own prayer aloud to another god during this time?

Quoting 12hellokitty:

 

No they wished to practice their Constitutional right to free speech.  Trying to silence their free speech is infringing upon their rights.  Those who don't wish to participate can close their ears...

Quoting romalove:

They wished to pray organized without regards for anyone else.

Quoting 12hellokitty:

 


Quoting romalove:


If I was a praying person and I lived there I would be praying for county commissioners who understood the First Amendment and that they were elected to serve all the people of their district, and not just the Christians.


They had free speech rights to pray during the moment of silence, however they wished to.  Now they took away the free speech rights of anyone who doesn't want to pray the same way.


Just completely stupid.  


No it didn't.  It was forcing them to pray in silence, which was not how they wished to pray... 

 


 



ChutterButter
by Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 11:33 AM

Hinduism, Buddhism, Paganism, and some Native American belief systems as well, just as an example. If that is the way they choose to pray would it not be fair to respect it as well?

Quoting 12hellokitty:

What religion/s are you referring to? 


 

Quoting ChutterButter:

I do indeed have an idea what I am talking about. I get what you are saying about the altar and circle so put that aside. Chanting and dancing are how many other religions choose to 'pray'.I do not fear prayer. I simply wish for the same regard and respect as others. This is a country of many religions. It is unfair for any form of government to show biast towards one over the many others. You yourself used the word 'general'. I do not like this term as it implies that encompasses everyone when in fact it does not. Many beliefs are excluded. No one's freedom of speech or religion or right to seperation of church and state is more important than another's.

Quoting 12hellokitty:

Seriously?  Your comment shows you really have no idea what you are talking about.  The opening prayer is a short general, prayer, it is not a worship service, or altar call. 

Curious if those of you who oppose the thought of an opening prayer, also oppose reciting The Pledge of Allegiance at public meetings?  I'm curious because there have been some recent incedents of radical liberals holding public office that have tried to do away with saying TPOA at public meetings.  It seems the people who fear prayer also fear TPOA.    


 

Quoting ChutterButter:

Would you feel the same way if they broke out their candles, altar, and tools and opened a circle? What if they wanted to chant and dance around the room? Would that also not constitute free speech? Would it be considered disrespectful or rude if someone in the room said their own prayer aloud to another god during this time?

Quoting 12hellokitty:


No they wished to practice their Constitutional right to free speech.  Trying to silence their free speech is infringing upon their rights.  Those who don't wish to participate can close their ears...

Quoting romalove:

They wished to pray organized without regards for anyone else.

Quoting 12hellokitty:



Quoting romalove:


If I was a praying person and I lived there I would be praying for county commissioners who understood the First Amendment and that they were elected to serve all the people of their district, and not just the Christians.


They had free speech rights to pray during the moment of silence, however they wished to.  Now they took away the free speech rights of anyone who doesn't want to pray the same way.


Just completely stupid.  


No it didn't.  It was forcing them to pray in silence, which was not how they wished to pray... 







12hellokitty
by Ruby Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 11:47 AM

 

All of the belief systems you list also pray using words.  So there is nothing preventing them from offering a general prayer not specific to their personal beliefs.  I have no idea if the prayer could be deliver as a chant, or dance.  I personally don't see why not, if it is representative of the community. 

 It's funny how so many are interested in opening prayer at public meetings, when the reality is very few people actually attend or even know anything about public meetings... and my comment is not directed at anyone specific, so please don't bother with replies of how involved you are in attending public meetings...

Quoting ChutterButter:

Hinduism, Buddhism, Paganism, and some Native American belief systems as well, just as an example. If that is the way they choose to pray would it not be fair to respect it as well?

Quoting 12hellokitty:

What religion/s are you referring to? 


 

Quoting ChutterButter:

I do indeed have an idea what I am talking about. I get what you are saying about the altar and circle so put that aside. Chanting and dancing are how many other religions choose to 'pray'.I do not fear prayer. I simply wish for the same regard and respect as others. This is a country of many religions. It is unfair for any form of government to show biast towards one over the many others. You yourself used the word 'general'. I do not like this term as it implies that encompasses everyone when in fact it does not. Many beliefs are excluded. No one's freedom of speech or religion or right to seperation of church and state is more important than another's.

Quoting 12hellokitty:

Seriously?  Your comment shows you really have no idea what you are talking about.  The opening prayer is a short general, prayer, it is not a worship service, or altar call. 

Curious if those of you who oppose the thought of an opening prayer, also oppose reciting The Pledge of Allegiance at public meetings?  I'm curious because there have been some recent incedents of radical liberals holding public office that have tried to do away with saying TPOA at public meetings.  It seems the people who fear prayer also fear TPOA.    


 

Quoting ChutterButter:

Would you feel the same way if they broke out their candles, altar, and tools and opened a circle? What if they wanted to chant and dance around the room? Would that also not constitute free speech? Would it be considered disrespectful or rude if someone in the room said their own prayer aloud to another god during this time?

Quoting 12hellokitty:

 

No they wished to practice their Constitutional right to free speech.  Trying to silence their free speech is infringing upon their rights.  Those who don't wish to participate can close their ears...

Quoting romalove:

They wished to pray organized without regards for anyone else.

Quoting 12hellokitty:

 


Quoting romalove:


If I was a praying person and I lived there I would be praying for county commissioners who understood the First Amendment and that they were elected to serve all the people of their district, and not just the Christians.


They had free speech rights to pray during the moment of silence, however they wished to.  Now they took away the free speech rights of anyone who doesn't want to pray the same way.


Just completely stupid.  


No it didn't.  It was forcing them to pray in silence, which was not how they wished to pray... 

 


 


 



ChutterButter
by Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 11:52 AM

You are correct. They also pray using words. I was just mentioning it due to your earlier comment of them being able to pray as they wish. I don't believe there is a way to pray in a way that does encompass all beliefs that are present at any given time. I think that was the point of the moment of silence. To give each person a moment to reflect, pray, think, whatever they wanted to do in their own way. 

Lol to the underlined part. On CM I see your point in the disclaimer

Quoting 12hellokitty:


All of the belief systems you list also pray using words.  So there is nothing preventing them from offering a general prayer not specific to their personal beliefs.  I have no idea if the prayer could be deliver as a chant, or dance.  I personally don't see why not, if it is representative of the community. 

 It's funny how so many are interested in opening prayer at public meetings, when the reality is very few people actually attend or even know anything about public meetings... and my comment is not directed at anyone specific, so please don't bother with replies of how involved you are in attending public meetings...

Quoting ChutterButter:

Hinduism, Buddhism, Paganism, and some Native American belief systems as well, just as an example. If that is the way they choose to pray would it not be fair to respect it as well?

Quoting 12hellokitty:

What religion/s are you referring to? 


 

Quoting ChutterButter:

I do indeed have an idea what I am talking about. I get what you are saying about the altar and circle so put that aside. Chanting and dancing are how many other religions choose to 'pray'.I do not fear prayer. I simply wish for the same regard and respect as others. This is a country of many religions. It is unfair for any form of government to show biast towards one over the many others. You yourself used the word 'general'. I do not like this term as it implies that encompasses everyone when in fact it does not. Many beliefs are excluded. No one's freedom of speech or religion or right to seperation of church and state is more important than another's.

Quoting 12hellokitty:

Seriously?  Your comment shows you really have no idea what you are talking about.  The opening prayer is a short general, prayer, it is not a worship service, or altar call. 

Curious if those of you who oppose the thought of an opening prayer, also oppose reciting The Pledge of Allegiance at public meetings?  I'm curious because there have been some recent incedents of radical liberals holding public office that have tried to do away with saying TPOA at public meetings.  It seems the people who fear prayer also fear TPOA.    


 

Quoting ChutterButter:

Would you feel the same way if they broke out their candles, altar, and tools and opened a circle? What if they wanted to chant and dance around the room? Would that also not constitute free speech? Would it be considered disrespectful or rude if someone in the room said their own prayer aloud to another god during this time?

Quoting 12hellokitty:


No they wished to practice their Constitutional right to free speech.  Trying to silence their free speech is infringing upon their rights.  Those who don't wish to participate can close their ears...

Quoting romalove:

They wished to pray organized without regards for anyone else.

Quoting 12hellokitty:



Quoting romalove:


If I was a praying person and I lived there I would be praying for county commissioners who understood the First Amendment and that they were elected to serve all the people of their district, and not just the Christians.


They had free speech rights to pray during the moment of silence, however they wished to.  Now they took away the free speech rights of anyone who doesn't want to pray the same way.


Just completely stupid.  


No it didn't.  It was forcing them to pray in silence, which was not how they wished to pray... 









12hellokitty
by Ruby Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 12:14 PM

 


Sorry if I wasn't clear in earlier posts, there are guidelines on opening prayer, just as there are for all speech at public meetings. 

I think the objection to the moment of silence in the OP is based on it was not what the community wanted.  It was instead the decision of 2 people who abused the power given to them by the people.  At public meeting the floor is open for people to speak, not be silent.  A moment of silence is denying those who wish to speak on the floor their right to free speech.  

  

Quoting ChutterButter:

You are correct. They also pray using words. I was just mentioning it due to your earlier comment of them being able to pray as they wish. I don't believe there is a way to pray in a way that does encompass all beliefs that are present at any given time. I think that was the point of the moment of silence. To give each person a moment to reflect, pray, think, whatever they wanted to do in their own way. 

Lol to the underlined part. On CM I see your point in the disclaimer

Quoting 12hellokitty:

 

All of the belief systems you list also pray using words.  So there is nothing preventing them from offering a general prayer not specific to their personal beliefs.  I have no idea if the prayer could be deliver as a chant, or dance.  I personally don't see why not, if it is representative of the community. 

 It's funny how so many are interested in opening prayer at public meetings, when the reality is very few people actually attend or even know anything about public meetings... and my comment is not directed at anyone specific, so please don't bother with replies of how involved you are in attending public meetings...



tweety101149
by Platinum Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 12:31 PM


Quoting 12hellokitty:

 

Quoting tweety101149:

 

Quoting 12hellokitty:

 

Quoting LilyofPhilly:

But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
Matthew 6:6.


Interesting.  While we are to not pray openly in vain, we are in fact called to pray for and with one another. 

As much as you and others want Christians to check their faith at the doors of their home and church, we have a RIGHT to practice our religion freely and openly and a core practice for Christians is prayer. 


Oh..here it comes,  to disagree with you and you cry persecution.  No one is denying your right to practice your religion, to lead prayer before the government meeting starts, is over-stepping the bounds of religion into government.    I am quite sure Christians would not like it if another religion decided to lead the  government meeting under another religion's prayer.

It seems many people have no understanding of what is allowed and what is not allowed.  To start the opening prayer is to be a general pray, not one to condemn or convert.  I think someone a few pages back gave an example of a pagan opening prayer.  So it's likely a person would not know the specific religious or non-religious belief of the person giving the opening prayer.    


You are still steppin on the rights of non believers, why should they have ANY prayer forced upon them.  If prayer is that necessary in order to conduct a meeting meet before the meeting starts with those of like minds say your prayer and go into the meeting room and have your meeting.  May the good will of your prayers follow you.

butterfly on headlynda  




12hellokitty
by Ruby Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 12:41 PM


Quoting tweety101149:

 

Quoting 12hellokitty:

 

Quoting tweety101149:

 

Quoting 12hellokitty:

 

Quoting LilyofPhilly:

But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
Matthew 6:6.


Interesting.  While we are to not pray openly in vain, we are in fact called to pray for and with one another. 

As much as you and others want Christians to check their faith at the doors of their home and church, we have a RIGHT to practice our religion freely and openly and a core practice for Christians is prayer. 


Oh..here it comes,  to disagree with you and you cry persecution.  No one is denying your right to practice your religion, to lead prayer before the government meeting starts, is over-stepping the bounds of religion into government.    I am quite sure Christians would not like it if another religion decided to lead the  government meeting under another religion's prayer.

It seems many people have no understanding of what is allowed and what is not allowed.  To start the opening prayer is to be a general pray, not one to condemn or convert.  I think someone a few pages back gave an example of a pagan opening prayer.  So it's likely a person would not know the specific religious or non-religious belief of the person giving the opening prayer.    


You are still steppin on the rights of non believers, why should they have ANY prayer forced upon them.  If prayer is that necessary in order to conduct a meeting meet before the meeting starts with those of like minds say your prayer and go into the meeting room and have your meeting.  May the good will of your prayers follow you.

Can you site what rights of non-believers are you referring to? 

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