Do We Really Need Prayer In Public Schools?

The beauty of prayer is that it is an individual act, and we do it by choice, where we choose to do it — in the forest, or within the public school. Nobody can stop the inner working of our mind. In the Forest, original oil painting by Steve Henderson; licensed open edition print at iCanvasART and Framed Canvas Art.

Christians, like all humans, fuss about things, and a central fussing point of the last many years is prayer in schools.

“Our country is falling apart because we no longer have prayer in schools,” people say. emphasizing the point with 2 Chronicles 7: 14 —

“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

All our problems? It’s because we no longer pray in schools.

There’s a freedom in admitting something we’ve denied for a long time. If you feel like you don’t fit in, then admit it, and recognize that you’re not necessarily the problem. The Misfit Christian by Carolyn Henderson, at

Given that I’m more than a half-century old, and at no point, in my school years, did we pray in schools, I’m not sure when these halcyon days of Christian piety were supposed to exist, but whether or not they did, there are three major reasons why we Christians do not need to — and probably should not — agitate for prayer in schools.

Please read the rest at my Commonsense Christianity column at BeliefNet, 3 Reasons America Does Not Need — or Want — Prayer in Schools. As you know, I am unable to print the whole article in more than one place, and I am grateful to my readers to click through.

I am also grateful to my readers who look at my book, The Misfit Christian, and consider purchasing it. Nobody likes to think of themselves as sticking out, but if you come home from church consistently feeling sad, depressed, or out of the loop, why not admit it to yourself and do something about it?

You’re not abnormal, you know — you’re part of a growing group of seekers who aren’t finding the truth where you’re told it will be. Want to find it? Get out your Bible, read it for yourself, and ask God to give you the faith you need to believe in Him.

2 Responses

  1. Katrina

    I think our country’s problem is that many parents are relying on someone else to do the work of training their children in all things having to do with civil and loving behavior. Kids are often the sole focus of parental spending but not the time needed to show by example how to treat others. Besides, children can quietly “talk” with God and not disturb others doing that. At Denfeld High School, a public one in Duluth, in the 1950’s at the start of each of three lunch periods, a bell sounded and all were respectfully quiet to give silent thanks to God – if they wanted – for their food. Respect is a learned behavior – especially taught by parents. So is belief in God.

    1. Very true and very wise, Katrina. Parents are being trained to give their children over to others — the church, the school system, the government — to do the raising and the teaching, and while this does not take them off the hook for willingly giving up their responsibilities, part of the blame lies on the “experts” who have insisted that they should be part of the village, raising this child.

      Parents — love and take responsibility for your children. You have a vested interest in them that no one else has, they were put in your family for a reason, and God gave you skills and experiences to pass on to them. And — they have much to teach you.

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