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U.S. Senate Chaplain Dr. Barry Black

America: The Nation That Prays

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On the first Thursday of February each year, lawmakers and religious leaders from around the world gather for an event here in Washington that has been going on for 65 years. It is the National Prayer Breakfast, which celebrates both the privilege of living in a nation where we can openly pray, and of how God yet remains the foundation of every freedom we enjoy in America.

President Trump recalled those very truths when he took the podium before political and faith leaders today saying, “This gathering is a testament to the power of faith and is one of the great customs of our nation…Our republic was formed on the basis that freedom is not a gift from government, but that freedom is a gift from God.”

I was deeply encouraged to hear the president also reference the legislation that FRC working with lawmakers introduced just yesterday on Capitol Hill — the Free Speech Fairness Act. In a show of solidarity with pastors who have been muzzled in their own pulpits by the decades-old Johnson Amendment, Trump stressed: “I will get rid of and totally destroy the Johnson Amendment and allow our representatives of faith to speak freely and without fear of retribution. I will do that, remember. Freedom of religion is a sacred right, but it is also a right under threat all around us.”

Trump mentioned atrocities carried out against religious groups overseas as well, noting that his new Secretary of Defense and Secretary of State were going to work toward rectifying the horrendous slaughter of Jews, Christians, and Muslims by totalitarian regimes. It was a refreshing change to hear the Commander-in-Chief talk about his love of, and belief in God’s wisdom for us and our country, and to correctly identify the disturbing pattern of persecution of believers both here and abroad.

As I told Shannon Bream when I joined her on Fox News “America’s Newsroom” this morning, I believe the president’s remarks to have been on-target, and a critical move toward returning faith to the public square. A move that is critical to well-being of every American, religious or not.



 

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