The “Show Me State” Shows Us That They Pray

Welcome to Missouri, a land of fertile plains, rolling hills, well-watered prairies and historic rivers…. and Prayer. 

On August 8, Missourians voted by a wide margin (83% of voters, or 780,000 people) for Amendment 2, a constitutional amendment which protects Missouri residents’ right to pray in public.  Missouri’s Catholic bishops backed the amendment, issuing a statement on August 3 which said “True religious freedom does not just constitute freedom to worship on Sunday, but also includes the freedom to express one’s faith publicly.”

Under Amendment 2, elected officials are permitted to pray on government premises and public property.  Studens are permitted to express their religious beliefs in schoolwork, and to exercise their religious beliefs during school hours and on school property in private, voluntary and non-disruptive ways.  Students are also permitted to opt out of school requirements (sex education classes, for example) which conflict with their personal religious beliefs.

Under the Amendment, public schools must display the U.S. Constitution’s Bill of Rights in “a conspicuous and legible manner.”

Predictably, the Americans United for Separation of Church and State and the Anti-Defamation League of Missouri and Southern Illinois oppose the legislation, and plan to file suit to block its implementation.

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  • Toni Zielinski

    They people in the last paragraph should be ashamed of themselves. There is no separation of church & state. It says Congress will not establish an official country church, like the Church of England.

    • Brian Westley

      US courts disagree:

      “The “establishment of religion” clause of the First Amendment means at least this: Neither a state nor the federal government can set up a church. Neither can pass laws which aid one religion, aid all religions, or prefer one religion over another. Neither can force nor influence a person to go to or to remain away from church against his will or force him to profess a belief or disbelief in any religion. No person can be punished for entertaining or professing religious beliefs or disbeliefs, for church attendance or non-attendance. No tax in any amount, large or small, can be levied to support any religious activities or institutions, whatever they may be called, or whatever form they may adopt to teach or practice religion. Neither a state nor the Federal Government can, openly or secretly, participate in the affairs of any religious organizations or groups and vice versa. In the words of Jefferson, the clause against establishment of religion by law was intended to erect “a wall of separation between church and State.””