April 21st, 2010
07:02 AM ET
12 years ago

Congressional group to support Day of Prayer

Washington (CNN) - Members of the Congressional Prayer Caucus will hold a news conference in Washington D.C. Wednesday to respond to a recent federal judge ruling that struck down the National Day of Prayer.

Among those scheduled to be at the 1 p.m. news conference is Congressman J. Randy Forbes, R-Virginia; Congressman Mike McIntyre, D-North Carolina; and Congressman Frank Wolf, R-Virginia.

"Members of Congress, along with leaders of faith organizations, will join together in responding to the federal judge's decision last week, to discuss the history of the National Day of Prayer and affirm the right of Americans to pray according to their faith," a statement on Forbes' Web site said.

Last week, a federal judge struck down the federal statute that established the National Day of Prayer, ruling that it violates the constitutional ban on government-backed religion.

The injunction against the National Day of Prayer will not take effect until the defendants in the case, President Obama and White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs, had exhausted their appeals, the judge said.

The Obama administration has said that Obama still intends to recognize this year's National Day of Prayer, which is May 6. The lawsuit against the Obama administration was brought by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, a group based in Madison, Wisconsin.

The statute that established the National Day of Prayer calls on the president to annually designate one day, other than a Sunday, "on which the people of the United States may turn to God in prayer and meditation at churches, in groups and as individuals."

The law was amended in 1988 to designate the first Thursday in May as the annual National Day of Prayer.

Filed under: Religion
soundoff (15 Responses)
  1. WoW

    Thank you Mr. Pres. This is one of the few things we agree on. Thanks for recognizing one day of National Prayer.

    April 21, 2010 08:55 am at 8:55 am |
  2. this is just stupid

    well dude go ahead and pray do you really need a day for it?

    April 21, 2010 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  3. neil

    why only churches? no mention of synagogues, buddhist temples, etc. saying 'groups' is too generic. i guess other types of religous institutions don't count!

    April 21, 2010 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  4. pgf

    It is a sad day when we are told by a judge when we can pray. Our country was founded on religious freedom. We need to stand up for our rights and not let these leaders determine our country's stand on our faith and freedom of religion!!

    This day of prayer is a choice, and they need to let us continue this tradition.

    A concerned Patriot

    April 21, 2010 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  5. Rick McDaniel

    Get it through your heads, Congress......religion in government is extremely dangerous.

    That is why we have the entire middle eastern problem, to start with.

    April 21, 2010 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  6. Limbaugh is a liberal

    This country has freedom of religion... as long as that religion is mainstream christian. If not we will treat you as an un-american freak.

    April 21, 2010 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  7. Michele

    While I think that we don't need some symbolic National Day to pray (people of faith pray whenever they feel the urge) I don't see this as 'establishing one religion." I assume that people pray to whoever their God of choice is, just as the founders insisted. Who is this judge?

    April 21, 2010 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  8. Dave

    "Last week, a federal judge struck down the federal statute that established the National Day of Prayer, ruling that it violates the constitutional ban on government-backed religion. "

    How is a day of prayer, in which you can use any prayer to any God you want, government backing a religion?

    The bottom line is: it is not. Many of these liberal judges and the ACLU basically will not rest until they eliminate God from society altogether.

    April 21, 2010 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  9. Chessnutz of Liverpool NY

    Congress needs more than one day of prayer before November elections. Because the American voter has a message for those who think that only they know what is best for the American people without asking them first.
    Congress "YOU ARE FIRED!
    Vote them all out this fall no matter what party they belong to.

    April 21, 2010 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  10. Pete

    The court was absolutely right in its ruling. Americans can pray anytime and anywhere they want already. Why do we need a National Day of Prayer?

    April 21, 2010 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  11. NotFooledTX

    Can we have a national day of Atheism then too?

    April 21, 2010 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  12. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    Just remember that there will always be prayers by students in school; it will happen right before the big test - "Oh, God help pass this test because I didn't study well!"

    I am sure that members of Congress do similar things. They be praying for a fellow member to vote with them on the bill.

    April 21, 2010 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  13. Monrob

    Such nonesense.

    April 21, 2010 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  14. rightsaid

    How can that statute NOT be a violation of the separation of church and state. A call for citizens to turn to God? That is deeply offensive to me. While we are at it, get God off my money. And for those of you who thin people with my perspective should lighten up, ask yourself how you would feel if your money said, In Allah We Trust!

    April 21, 2010 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  15. SethC

    I truly believe in a day of prayer for our nation, that is the foundation of the constitution. There is no reason to take it out. My gosh other religions seem to have more freedoms than the Christian faith does! What is wrong with this picture, I know that athiest, and liberals, will protest this, but we have rights too!!!!!

    April 21, 2010 09:58 am at 9:58 am |