On this Memorial Day Weekend, we celebrate those brave men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. I think of my own grandfather (WWI) and father (WWII) who understood that freedom was not free. Perhaps one of our greatest freedoms in American is the freedom of speech protected by the First Amendment. Have you thought about prayer as freedom of speech? Praying is to me, the highest form of speech. The thought that we can enter into the very throne room of God and be heard is incredible. Prayer is the highest form of speech and is protected well above the laws of man, but it is so comforting to know that in a great country like America, our founding fathers knew that we needed protection. On this Memorial Day Weekend, I would like to recommend the absolute best resource for understanding the freedom of speech in light of prayer and bible study. Gateways to Better Education has produced an excellent resource pamphlet, FREE to Speak with the US DOE guidelines in an attractive and easy to understand format. I love having small seminars and spending a good part diving deeper into this small, but powerful guideline because we are so misinformed in our public schools that just the mention of prayer closes doors.
According to the US DOE, "Students organize prayer groups, religious clubs, and 'See You at the Pole' gatherings before school to the same extent that students are permitted to organize other non-curricular student activities groups. Such groups must be given the same access to school facilities for assembling as is given to other non-curricular groups, without discrimination because of their religious content of their expression." In other words, if there is an intramural team, a chess club or any other groups that meets on campus, then students may start a Bible Club, prayer group or any other religious meeting. It needs to be student-led, but teacher sponsored.
There is a small fee for printing these little booklets from Gateways to Better Education, but I am that impressed with the impact that the seven guidelines define that I would buy them for you if you wanted to share. Please do not hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to take me up on the offer. Freedom is not free, but the freedom of speech, especially prayer, is worth fighting for. May God bless you and the memory of your family members who gave their lives that we may be free.
Note: To more fully understand the 16-9 Movement, please read the first blog entry by clicking here.