Letter to The Editor - Please do not approve the proposal to abolish the recitation of the Lord's Prayer from Parliament
To THE SENATE STANDING COMMITTEE ON PROCEDURE c/- Mr Richard Pye, Clerk of the Senate, Parliament House, Canberra
Please do not approve the proposal to abolish the recitation of the Lord's Prayer from Parliament. My reasons are as follows:
(1) Most Australians are followers of a sacred tradition, though not all of these followers are adherents of Christianity. Therefore, Parliamentary proceedings are better commenced with a reading of this prayer than no reading.
(2) The text of the prayer is very inclusive. Although said to be a prayer used by Jesus, its origins are lost in the mists of the far past. It is a prayer that adherents of other faiths can participate in in good conscience. The prayer is a key part of Christian liturgy, but its text is not specifically Christian.
(3) The reading of the prayer does not in any way harm those who are atheists or agnostics; but it certainly encourages believers to do good rather than ill. It is thus in the national interest for it to be read.
(4) Contrary to so-called scientific claims, the universe and human existence remain profound mysteries. A people is wise to bow its collective head to the Invisible and Inscrutable even if unable to comprehend fully its nature. This is particularly so for parliaments, which represent peoples.
(5) The sentiments of the prayer are entirely admirable and would have the support of the great majority of Australians.
Please confirm that this request/submission has been received.
Nigel Jackson, Belgrave, Vic