Judge wants prayer back in schools

Published 5:00 am Wednesday, September 26, 2001

The United States received a “wake-up call” Sept. 11 and it’stime to return prayer to public schools, said 14th District CircuitJudge Mike Smith.

In a letter to U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice WilliamRehnquist, Smith asks the court to revisit the school prayer issue,reverse present law and allow voluntary prayer.

“We have been asked by our President and Congress to pray. Don’tyou think it’s about time to restore voluntary prayer to ourschools,” the Pike County judge said in the letter. “No one wouldbe forced to attend prayer. Those who don’t want to hear prayerover a p.a. (public address) system could assemble in a suitableplace without a speaker.”

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In the letter, Smith quotes 2 Chronicles 7:14:

“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humblethemselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wickedways; then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, andwill heal their land.”

Smith referred to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the WorldTrade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington D.C. as awake-up call.

“We’ve been warned,” Smith said. “We can continue to ignoreAlmighty God and suffer the consequences or we can obey Him and Hewill heal our land.”