Did Supreme Court Prayer Win Backfire on Christians?

Greece, New York
Flags fly outside the Greece Town Hall in Greece, New York. (Reuters/Adam Fenster)

Call it irony. An atheist is going to deliver the invocation in the town of Greece, New York. It's ironic because it's the same town that won the U.S. Supreme Court case that preserved its right in a 5-4 ruling to start its meetings with public prayer.

Of course, all public prayer isn't a petition in the name of Jesus—and the secular humanists are now moving to make the most of their loss.

Dan Courtney, who is endorsed by the American Humanist Association's (AHA) Humanist Society, is delivering a "secular invocation" on Wednesday. It's the first-ever secular invocation given before the town of Greece board meeting.

What is a secular invocation anyway? The Humanist Socieity defines it as a "short speech that solemnizes a meeting or event by appealing to the audience's shared human values instead of a deity."

Apparently, this secularist agenda is drawing more atheists to the town square. Since the Supreme Court decision, dozens of humanists have stepped forward to offer secular invocations before local legislative meetings, including Courtney.

Indeed, the AHA reports the Humanist Society's list of secular invocation speakers has more than doubled to include over 150 speakers since the town of Greece ruling.

The AHA has made it abundantly clear that it wants to boost its number of secular invocation speakers so that humanists, atheists and other nontheists across the nation can be represented at their local legislatures.

Was the Supreme Court ruling, then, a bittersweet victory? I don't think so. The alternative is no chance for prayers in the name of Jesus in the public square. Maybe some of these 150 speakers that plan to invade meetings with secular invocations will meet with some on-fire Christians who can show them Jesus.

Jennifer LeClaire is news editor at Charisma. She is also director of IHOP Fort Lauderdale and author of several books, including The Making of a Prophet and The Spiritual Warrior's Guide to Defeating Jezebel. You can email Jennifer at [email protected] or visit her website here. You can also join Jennifer on Facebook or follow her on Twitter.

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