Saturday, February 13, 2016

Town Council Prays to Jesus, Rabbi Fumes: Arizona

Despite a complaint about invocations at the Chino Valley Town Council meetings, council members encouraged the mayor to open meetings by praying according to his own personal faith.  At this week's meeting, as he began the invocation, and then again as he closed the prayer in the name of Jesus Christ, Rabbi Adele Plotkin of Chino Valley's Beit Torah congregation loudly protested and was subsequently escorted from the room when she insisted on continued disruptions of the meeting.
“Our Bill of Rights protects us against the establishment of religion by the state, and yet it would appear that secular humanism with its mantra of political correctness has become just that, the state established religion which the First Amendment was supposed to protect us against.  Our oath of office requires that we defend the Constitution, and yet we are being asked to give up our right to freely worship according to the dictates of conscious.  As a nation, we have already lost a number of our freedoms:  The right to peacefully assemble and our protection against unreasonable search and seizure are already gone, and a number of others are being stripped away as we speak.  I can't speak for the rest of the Council, but I believe it is time to draw a line in the sand, at least for me it is. . . . Jesus was pretty plain[:] if you pray, ask the Father for anything in my name. It will be granted.”
-- Mayor Chris Marley, Associate Pastor, Miller Valley Baptist Church

“I want the citizens to be aware, us standing our ground, if this is challenged, it could cost the town money to defend it.  Personally, I'm willing to do that.  But we are representatives of the town, so speak up when you get a chance and we'll unite around this.”
-- Corey Mendoza, council member
For background, click headlines below to read previous articles:

Coolidge, Arizona City Council Allows Only Christian Prayers

California Mayor Calls City Prayer Vigil to Seek Solutions

Mississippi Police Chief Thanks God at City Prayer Meetings

North Carolina Citizens Demand Prayer in Public School

Let us Pray in School: It's the Law in Missouri

Prayer Stays in Florida School, Opposing Atheists

Texas School Supt. Tells Anti-prayer Atheists to Go Fly a Kite

Also read Lone Jew, ACLU Stop Prayer in Pennsylvania Town and read 'Atheist Jew' Sues California Town Council for Praying

-- From "Rabbi ejected from Northern Arizona town meeting over prayer" by The Associated Press 2/11/16

[Mayor] Marley announced before the Jan. 26 council meeting that he would not perform an invocation until council members had a chance to discuss how they planned to conduct invocations after receiving criticism. He confirmed his intention to halt the prayers to media after the Jan. 26 meeting.

Marley said at the Tuesday meeting that he decided to continue with the invocation despite his previous comments because some council members said he should do so.

[Rabbi Plotkin] said her faith considers appearing to approve of worshipping Jesus as idolatry and that she has contacted the American Civil Liberties Union [ACLU] to contest the town's invocation policy.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Rabbi protests Christian prayer given at northern Arizona city council meeting" by Bob McClay, KTAR-FM92.3 (Phoenix, AZ) 2/12/16

[Mayor] Marley said he told the crowd they were not obligated to stand while it was being said and that the views expressed were his and not those of Chino Valley.

The majority of people who can be seen in a video of the meeting appear to be standing and joining in the prayer, which ended with Marley saying, “I pray all of these things in the name of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.”

Later in the meeting, the city council decided prayer would continue to open the meetings, with a notice on the agenda announcing the invocation will happen in the first 10 minutes.

Marley said anyone who objects to the prayer can leave and re-enter the meeting after it’s over. Different Council members will take turns leading the prayer, so Marley said they may not all be led to pray “in Jesus’ name.”

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Chino Valley council prays in name of Jesus; rabbi ejected from meeting" by Ken Sain, Associate Editor, Chino Valley Review (posted at Prescott Daily Courier) 2/11/16

All seven members of the council spoke in favor of keeping the current [invocation] tradition.

Six of the seven Chino Valley council members identified themselves as Christians and one as a non-Christian. The non-Christian member was offered a chance to join the invocation rotation, but declined. Therefore, only Christians are currently giving the invocations.

[Rabbi] Plotkin contacted a Chino Valley Review reporter before the Feb. 9 meeting to confirm that no invocation was planned, saying she couldn't attend if they intended to pray to Jesus. She said she wanted to attend the meeting so that she could begin to build bridges with the council members on this issue, but would only do so if there was no invocation.

"He lied," Plotkin said of the mayor's reversal.

She said she had no choice but to protest because not doing so would have been one of the three cardinal sins, according to her beliefs.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

Also read Satanists to Lead 'Prayer' in Phoenix Government

And read Loud Muslim Prayer: Takeover of Michigan Town