Indiana State Senator promotes bill allowing the Lord's Prayer i - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Indiana State Senator promotes bill allowing the Lord's Prayer in public schools

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LOUISVILLE, KY. (WDRB) -- Should the Lord's Prayer be recited in Indiana public schools?  It's a conversation that makes so many people uncomfortable, that today WDRB's Gilbert Corsey found many districts wouldn't even talk about it.

The Holy Bible verse from the sixth chapter of Matthew represents a fundamental teaching of the Christian faith.  State Senator Dennise Kruse believes the Lord's Prayer should not just be taught in Sunday School, but in public school as well.

Senate Bill 23 would allow teachers, students, or the entire class to say the prayer at school.

Pastor Ken Jobst of Saint Stephen Church of Southern Indiana has what may be a surprising opinion on that idea:  "I really think he's putting too much emphasis on the role of the school system....I think the legislation may be a bit narrow, a bit misguided.  I would like to see lawmakers empower schools to do their mission.  Empower families to do their mission, and allow the faith community to do their mission."

The bill does have opt-out provisions for students or parents who don't want their children to participate.

Reaction today was varied, with Jennifer Gunther saying, "They always take God out of schools and I think He really should be back in schools."

Barbara Rumpke responded, "Not all kids that go to school are Christian and that's a Christian prayer and I'm a Christian, but I don't think it needs to be legislated."

Most southern Indiana school leaders won't even touch the topic, partly because they don't have faith it will pass.  Neyland Clark, the Superintendent of South Harrison Community Schools, says, "If you bring the Lord's Prayer or a Christian prayer into the school, you also have to be very sensitive to the other religions, Muslim faith, the Jewish faith."

Hurdles are plenty, but conservatives have a better than two to one majority in the Indiana Legislature right now.

Meanwhile, Senator Kruse seem more intent just having the talk than changing law:  "My intention in filing this legislation was to foster a conversation about religious liberty in our state and our country."

The bill has been sent to the Senate Rules and Legislative Procedure Committee.

We'd like to know what you have to say on school prayer.

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