May 8, 2013 10:53:26 AM
Takes issue with column
While it is true that the religious makeup of the United States has changed, that change today does not give journalists and historians the right to change history. That is exactly what Slim Smith has attempted to do in his article entitled, "Christians Only?" in his April 30 column.
President Truman called for a National Day of Prayer on April 17, 1952. However, note that his proclamation said that it could be held on any day except Sunday: "the President 'shall set aside and proclaim a suitable day each year, other than a Sunday, as a National Day of Prayer ..." Muslim's day of worship is Friday and there is no day of worship in Hinduism and Shintoism. Jew's day of worship is the Sabbath -Saturday. Why any day except Sunday? That is the official day of worship for Christians.
Truman also wrote, "Whereas I deem it fitting that this Day of Prayer coincide with the anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence." The Declaration of Independence was based on the Bible; not on the Koran or the Veda. The founding fathers were Christians-a fact that atheists have been trying to disclaim.
Finally, where were people to pray on this day? He wrote, "in our churches, in our homes and in our hearts." He didn't mention mosques or temples. Christians meet in "churches." Truman, as was common in those years, address the religion of the majority-Christianity. From our origin through the twentieth century, the phrase "all faiths" meant Judaism, Catholicism, Methodist, Baptists, Lutherans, Presbyterian, and all the other Christian congregations.
However, these facts do not enable Slim Smith to brandish his secular, progress attack against Christianity and the Republican Mayoral candidate Glenn Lautzenhiser.
One must wonder what his motivation was and is. He attempts to create a cause for people of different religions who neither wanted to participate in the National Day of Prayer (because even they know it is a Christian-based event), nor knew they were offended. His real cause is political. His real motivation is to support Mayor Smith and the Democrat Party. His job should be, as Andrea Self of WCBI said so eloquently, to report the truth.
It is curious that Slim Smith chose to rebuke the National Day of Prayer committee for not inviting Muslims, Hindus, etc. by quoting Matthew 7:12 and Luke 6:31 in his article-"Do unto others what you would have them do unto you." That is the high of 'self-righteous' hypocrisy.
The National Day of Prayer Committee was not obligated to fulfill Mr. Smith's idea of what Christians should be.
The writer is pastor of First Christian Church in Columbus.