If I told you a pastor from Kansas said something about prayer in public schools, you’d probably cringe.
So it was a pleasant surprise to read what Adam Hamilton, senior pastor of The United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, Kansas, had to say about the call for putting God back in school in the aftermath of Sandy Hook:
Read the whole thing and let’s give credit where it’s due. We complain that not enough Christians fight for church/state separation especially in times of tragedy, so we ought to highlight it when it happens. We need more pastors to follow Hamilton’s lead.
In America our public schools are intended to be religiously neutral. Our teachers and schools are neither to endorse nor to inhibit religion. I believe this is a very good thing. When my kids were growing up I wanted their teachers to teach them science, reading, math, and history. I also wanted them to care about my kids. But I did not want my children’s public school teachers teaching them religion. That was my job as a parent, and the job of our church, Sunday school, and youth group.
If we’re going to put God back in schools, which God are we talking about? Within the Christian family alone there are often dramatically different ways of talking about God: fundamentalists, conservative evangelicals, Pentecostals, Charismatics, moderates, progressives, liberals, Calvinists and Arminians, high-church and low-church — and these are just the Protestants! Add in Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, and a host of groups that are often said to be outside the mainstream and you can begin to see the dilemma.
(Thanks to Steve for the link!)