Thursday, June 09, 2011

Texas Gov. Calls America to Prayer & Fasting

Governor Rick Perry's mega Christian event planned for August 6th in Houston, hosted by the American Family Association, has riled atheists and liberal "christians" alike who worship the "separation of church and state."

UPDATE 7/28/11: Judge Tosses Suit Seeking to Stop Prayer Rally

UPDATE 7/16/11 - Atheists sue over prayer event (video):

-- From "Perry invites governors to prayer rally" by UPI 6/6/11

Texas Gov. Rick Perry, a potential presidential candidate, is inviting fellow governors to a prayer rally sponsored by conservative activists.

On their Web site, organizers of the event, funded by the American Family Association, liken America's situation to Bible times.

"The people were not prepared to face the external threats rising up against them: economic, political and military in nature," they write.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Governor Perry’s call to prayer" posted at Reuters 6/5/11

“There is hope for America… and we will find it on our knees,” Perry says in an invitation to fellow Americans to join him for “a solemn gathering of prayer and fasting” for the country in August in Houston.

“Right now, America is in crisis,” Perry says in a message on The Response web site. “We have been besieged by financial debt, terrorism, and a multitude of natural disasters. As a nation, we must come together, and call upon Jesus to guide us through unprecedented struggles.”

The Mississippi-based American Family Association, a conservative Christian activist group, is footing the bill for the prayer gathering. But it was the governor’s idea.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Perry prayer event generates strong reaction" by Joshunda Sanders, American-Statesman Staff 6/8/11

Critics, including the Texas Freedom Network and the Anti-Defamation League, contend that the event is exclusive to Christians and raise questions about the event's backing by the American Family Association, which has made headlines for anti-gay sentiments. The website describing the event said it is meant to pray for a "historic breakthrough for our country and a renewed sense of moral purpose."

"It is Christian-centered, but the governor invites all people of faith to participate, and in the past has participated in many events hosted by other faith traditions," Catherine Frazier, a spokeswoman for Perry's office, said in an email.

Though The Response is not much of a diversion from Perry's general participation in public prayer, it still has drawn irritation because of the American Family Association affiliation and concerns that the move is more political than religious.

Frazier said that's not the case: "This doesn't have anything to do with politics — the governor believes in the power of prayer and thinks this event is important to unifying our nation, having them come together and seek wisdom and guidance from God in addressing our nation's challenges," she said. "It is an apolitical, nondenominational event."

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Rick Perry’s Controversial Call to Prayer" by Amy Sullivan, Time Magazine 6/8/11

Several groups, including the Interfaith Alliance and the Secular Coalition, have already expressed concern about the “Christians only” nature of the event, as well as Perry’s apparent official endorsement of a sectarian prayer gathering. Pundits have speculated about whether governors will feel pressure to show up to Perry’s prayer-fest or risk being labeled anti-prayer godless secularists. But at least one Republican governor has already made it clear he won’t be attending, which may open the door for others to decline. Although who wouldn’t want to head to Houston in August?

Other governors haven’t yet responded to Perry’s invite, but they may want to think twice about that whole “pray about natural disasters” thing. You may remember that back in April, Perry issued a proclamation for days of prayer for rain in response to a horrific drought the state of Texas has experienced. He’s not the first governor to respond to weather-related difficulties with state-wide prayer. Governors in Georgia and Alabama have done the same at various point over the past few decades.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Perry's Planned Prayer Event Riles Critics" By Stephen Clark, 6/7/11

Perry will participate in the all-day event that encourages people to bring a Bible and a notebook. Perry has invited every governor in the country to attend, and he is urging them to issue similar proclamations.

"I urge all Americans of faith to pray on that day for the healing of our country, the rebuilding of our communities and the restoration of enduring values as our guiding force," he said.

The Rev. Welton Gaddy, president of Interfaith Alliance, said Perry's call "raises serious concerns about his commitment to the boundaries between religion and government."

The Texas Democratic Party slammed Perry's motives.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.