Oklahoma’s Republican Governor Mary Fallin, above, has officially designated October 13th as a day of prayer for the oil industry.
Oilfield Prayer Day is the brainchild of Reverend Tom Beddow, who, as the head of Oklahoma’s Oil Patch Chaplains, travels around the state to provide ministry to employees in the oil industry.
He hopes that churches across the state will open their doors and that Christians will flood the pews to ask God to strengthen the oil industry.
Fallin heartily agreed with the concept, made an official proclamation for the day, and plans to attend a special prayer breakfast in Oklahoma City on Thursday morning.
In her official proclamation, Fallin notes that Oklahoma is “blessed” with a large amount of oil and gas, adding that:
Christians acknowledge such natural resources are created by God.
Because of all that fossil fuels do for the state, Fallin says:
Christians are invited to thank God for the blessings created by the oil and natural gas industry and to seek His wisdom and ask for protection.
Writing for Patheos, Michael Stone said:
There is something profoundly perverse about Gov Mary Fallin asking citizens of Oklahoma to pray for the oil and natural gas industry, instead of, say, the homeless, or kids with cancer, or those suffering from war, famine, and oppression around the globe.
Yet perhaps more important, there is something deeply distasteful about Fallin using her authority as Governor to promote her particularly perverse and crass vision of Christianity. At the very least, her sectarian call for prayers is an insult to the US Constitution, and the secular values upon which this nation was founded.
Oklahoma’s wealthiest person, Harold Hamm, made much of his $15 billion fortune from shale oil fracking, the same oil extraction method responsible for at least 90% of the earthquakes in Oklahoma.
This is the same Harold Hamm that Donald Trump is considering for his energy secretary.
And what about George Kaiser? Here’s another oil billionaire of Oklahoma, whose family foundation’s bad investments will leave taxpayers on the hook for $535 million in federal loans, and who has built his fortune in part by utilizing tax loopholes.
This whole farce is a disturbing example of the power the 1% wields over politics in America. The oil companies, to ensure their survival, have recruited church and community leaders to fill the heads of their followers with nonsense, connecting their religion with a greedy, corrupt industry which wants nothing more than to protect profit.
Perhaps it would be more prudent for Gov Mary Fallin and the Republican-dominated legislature to stop praying to the oil industry and start passing laws to make their state’s oil billionaires pay their fair share of taxes.