Saturday, November 21, 2009

George Washington's Prayer

Flickr Photograph

Did George Washington ever suppose that prayer would someday be outlawed in his nation?

Almighty God: We make our earnest prayer that Thou wilt keep these United States in Thy holy protection; that thou wilt incline the hearts of the citizens to cultivate a spirit of subordination and obedience to government; and entertain a brotherly affection and love for one another and for their fellow citizens of the United States at large. And finally that Thou wilt most graciously be pleased to dispose us all to do justice, to love mercy and to demean ourselves with that charity, humility and pacific temper of mind which were the characteristics of the divine author of our blessed religion, and without a humble imitation of whose example in these things we can never hope to be a happy nation. Grant our supplication, we beseech thee, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

This prayer is engraved on a bronze tablet in Saint Paul's Chapel, Broadway and Vesey Streets, New York City, and supposedly was quoted from Franklin Steiner's "The Religious Beliefs of Our Presidents," pages 19, 20. Today, there are attacks upon this prayer claiming that Washington never wrote or prayed it. It is very difficult to discern the truth of history.

The image, Washington's Prayer, is subject to copyright by Edna Barney. It is posted here with permission via the Flickr API by barneykin.

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