Friday, May 07, 2004

I Missed the National Day of Prayer

From The Church of Critical Thinking, a nice, little, slightly sarcastic, bit about the National Holiday yesterday.  Read the whole thing if you've got a couple of minutes to spare:

When is National Search and Seizure Day?

This Thursday is the 52nd Annual National Day of Prayer.

You're thinking, "Surely that can't be a government-sanctioned holiday, right? That must be a Hallmark Holiday or something some Church came up with to promote religion, right?" Sadly, no.

{...] The President asks that you give thanks, according to your own faith, for God's guidance and protection. Your own faith. God's guidance and protection. I guess your own faith is okay, as long as it has a God.

Oh, and Jesus, too. God, and Jesus. According to the National Day of Prayer website, "Prayer is opening your life to Jesus." Forget that other stuff about your own faith. There must be God and Jesus. It can still be your own faith, I guess. But make sure it includes God and Jesus. Come on, it's a Government sanctioned National Day of Prayer. You want to be a team player, right? You call yourself an American? America is praying to God and Jesus.

But what if you're not sure what to pray for? That's okay. The NDP Website offers suggestions in five key areas: Government, Media, Education, Church, and Family. Five points of prayer, Five minutes a day. They call that the Freedom Five! You can even download wallpaper for your computer desktop so you don't forget to take the Freedom Five Challenge. The website actually says, "By targeting these specific areas, America can experience the freedom that accompanies God's power."

I swear. I am not making this up.

Not sure how to pray? That's okay. The NDP Website offers tips in that area, including Prayer Posture, which I guess is important if God's going to pay attention to your prayers. God cares how you're sitting.

[...] Why is it so acceptable for the Government to violate this clause of the constitution again and again and again with no repercussions, and barely any uproar? In fact, as we recently saw in the House, a person can actually get chastised for not violating the separation clause. How is this okay? Where is the outrage?

The author goes on to comment on other things, all rather amusing.  He does not pick up on one thing, though.  The "honorary chairman" of this year's NDP is Ollie North.  The NDP website has a link hawking North's new book:

True Freedom Prayer Resource 
True Freedom
by Oliver North
Real-life stories about how prayer gives freedom from guilt, anxiety and self-deception.

Why might North be interested in freedom from guilt, anxiety and self-deception?  Here's a clue:

From NDP site
From United States v. Oliver L. North, Office of the Independent Counsel (OIC) Papers, National Archives & Records Administration, College Park, Maryland. (link)