Letter to The Editor
To The Editor:
“As the schools go, so goes the nation” has been quoted many times throughout the decades.
When I attended public school from 1949 through 1961, there was always a Bible on the teacher’s desk.
Every morning we read 10 verses of Scripture, prayed the Lord’s Prayer, pledged the American flag, and sometimes sang a hymn or a patriotic song. We were then dismissed for class.
We were protected under God’s umbrella, so to speak. Now, there is no longer a Bible on the desk, or prayer, or a song.
The pledge is done halfheartedly — sometimes without the students even honoring the flag by standing.
Going back to 1963, when John F. Kennedy was president of the United States, a very small number of people decided to challenge prayer and Bible reading in school.
It appears to me that 1963 became a year of major judgment on America. The Supreme Court passed its decision to bow down to the challengers instead of following the principles upon which our country came into being.
President Kennedy was assassinated. The Vietnam War escalated. Hollywood became more corrupt. Television programs and movies started having more violence and immoral, inappropriate language and action.
The country started a downward spiral which brings us 55 years later into a period of broken families, Christianity taking second place, discipline and accountability made unacceptable, as well as many more malicious practices.
If a small number of people challenged prayer out of schools, cannot a small number of people challenge it back into schools?
The foundation of our nation was based on God’s principles beginning in 1620. The majority of settlers from that time forward were basically of the Christian faith.
However, it seems that the “melting pot” holding so many different “ingredients” has become a kettle of unidentifiable parts with no absolute significance of what we stand for anymore.
God says in II Chronicles 7:14, “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”
Billy Graham, one of the greatest evangelists of our time preached all over the world, and in America taught many people about God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
If the millions of Christians in America would fall on their knees and seek His face as His Word states, perhaps our children and grandchildren could once again feel safe in school, at home, and in this land.
To “make America great again” needs to begin on an individual level. We have the freedom of religion here, so let’s fill our churches and come together (putting aside petty differences) as one people worshipping God and following His Word.
Perhaps in that way, we can get prayer back in school, violence off television, movies, and video games.
While there will always be evil in the world, we can have our “little corner of the world” begin to do what is right and help others do the same.
We can once again “grow” this land to be what God sanctioned it to be — one nation, under God, indivisible.
Mary Bittner Henry
Editor’s note: Mary Bittner Henry is a freelance columnist for The Press. She wrote this Letter to The Editor on March 2, two days after Lehigh Career and Technical Institute was put on lockdown.