The controversy at Seattle Pacific University.
If you want to say the pledge, why do you have to do it in church? That’s not a normal part of most Christian worship services. Why don’t you just stand up afterwards and invite people who want to participate in something patriotic to a small, private service out the by the flagpole, and those who wish to participate in that can then do so?
This is, in fact, what I had to do when I was a part of a peace group in church! We were not allowed to incorporate our prayers for peace into the liturgy, not even on January 1st, which is a feast day in the Catholic Church know as World Peace Day — not even then! Oh, no. People would get offended, you know! It was too controversial, all this talk about peace in the house of God, who is the Prince of Peace. We were relegated to an outside gathering after church at the peace pole, and those who wanted to join us, could. We were allowed to stand up after Mass and invite people to come join us in a rosary. Most people were more interested in brunch, of course. But our peace group, being peaceful, did not complain.
What is funny is that the people at SPU who objected to getting roped into participating in some kind of collective patriotic expression in a sacred space are being branded the whiny, too easily offended liberal sort; but isn’t it just as whiny to say that you are offended when other people wish not to participate in your honor ceremonies and theatrics that have nothing to do with worship of God, which is what a church is for? When people say, “No thanks” to this kind of thing, and object to it being foisted upon them, those people who want everyone to join in their patriotic ritual become apoplectic with righteous indignation!
As we’ve always said at CAM, Christian churches should be preserved as sacred spaces. We applaud the folks at SPU who had the courage to speak out and we hope this is a sign that after more than a decade of war, Christians are finally starting to get tired of this kind of thing and are going to start speaking out more and saying, “Enough already.”