Missouri Bishop Voices Opposition to Amendment 2
ST LOUIS - Just two weeks before the August 7 election, Bishop Wayne Smith of the Missouri Diocese of the Episcopal Church announced he opposes proposed Amendment 2 designed to protect religious freedom in public schools.
"This initiative represents but the latest attempt to circumvent the decided law of the land, namely, that public prayer has no place in the public schools," Bishop Smith said in a written statement. "Such prayer results in vague and innocuous language, so as to offend no one, that it becomes no prayer at all. Or else the practice becomes the vehicle for a sectarian agenda, typically Christian and typically Protestant, in violation of the no-establishment clause of the U. S. Constitution's First Amendment. One's faith can be robust enough, and clear enough, that it need not rely on tactics in the public arena that are out of keeping with our Constitutional heritage."
Those opposed say the amendment could lead to lawsuits and cost the state money. Supporters say the measure would protect residents and students' rights to practice their own religious beliefs.