Singing God Bless America several thousand people “rallied for governmental prayer Monday evening before the Rowan County Board of Commissioners’ meeting” according to the Salisbury Post.
A Federal Judge a few months prior had ordered the county commissioners to stop prayer before each of their meetings.
“Return America, a Forsyth County-based group founded with the aim of “restoring our Judeo-Christian heritage,” organized the rally,” the Salisbury Post went on to report.
According to Return America, “The Rowan County Commissioners have been told by a Federal Judge in Greensboro that they no longer have the Constitutional right to pray in Jesus’ Name before their meetings.
Throughout this nation, those who oppose religious freedoms are attempting to steal our rights from us. It is time for us to stand up for our rights. Come join us in a show of support to these commissioners who are willing to stand for our freedoms.”
“The Rev. Ron Baity, pastor of Berean Baptist Church in Winston-Salem and president of Return America, spoke to the crowd before and after speaking to commissioners. He told the board if the right to pray in the public sector is lost, “then the next place they’re going to come for it is in our churches,” According to the Winston Salem Journal.
“David Gibbs III, lead attorney for Rowan County commissioners in a suit filed against them through the American Civil Liberties Union, told the crowd, “If you have prayer without Jesus, you just formed a non-Jesus religion.”
“He said President Obama supports prayer in government, that Congress still opens meetings with prayers in Jesus’ name, as does the N.C. Legislature. “We need to recognize this is our tradition,” Gibbs said,” reports the Salisbury Post.
“ This crowd today is sending a signal,” Baity said. “We want it the way it used to be. … I think everybody is beginning to understand we ought to be able to pray in Jesus’ name.”
Prayer in Government
“The U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in a 2011 case involving the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners that local governments can use an invocation, but only if it is nonsectarian. After the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review that ruling, more than 20 local governments in North Carolina, including Forsyth, changed their opening innovations in order to comply with the law,” The Winston Salem Journal added.
About Return America: “In 2006, some of the board members of the North Carolina Christian School Association became gravely concerned about the increasing lack of knowledge and respect for our Judeo-Christian heritage and decreasing morality in America. As a result, Return America was officially started in April 2006, of which Dr. Ron Baity is the founder and president.
The purpose of Return America is to build a network of churches and individuals to educate, motivate and mobilize citizens in a united effort in promoting Judeo-Christian values; to educate and influence government in these principles upon which our state and nation were founded.”
For more information go to Return America.