Three Christians disrupt
Hindu prayer in Senate
Reactions to the protest
Comments on the protest by Operation Save America:
|Rev. Flip Benham, the director of Operation Save America issued a
press release, expressing frustration that none of the senators supported the
protestors directly. Benham wrote:|
"Ante Pavkovic, Kathy Pavkovic, and Kristen Sugar were all arrested
in the chambers of the United States Senate as that chamber was violated
by a false Hindu god. The Senate was opened with a Hindu prayer placing
the false god of Hinduism on a level playing field with the One True
God, Jesus Christ. This would never have been allowed by our Founding
"Not one Senator had the backbone to stand as our Founding Fathers
stood. They stood on the Gospel of Jesus Christ! There were three in the
audience with the courage to stand and proclaim, 'Thou shalt have no
other gods before me.' They were immediately removed from the chambers,
arrested, and are in jail now. God bless those who stand for Jesus as we
know that He stands for them." 1
"HOW THE MIGHTY HAVE FALLEN! Have our elected officials forgotten so
quickly the God of our Pilgrim Forefathers, the God of our Founding
Fathers, and the God who has blessed America and made her the mightiest
nation in the world? Has Jesus, who made this nation free, been
prostrated to the same level as every other religion?"
"The events that took place in the Senate chambers yesterday would
indicate that the answer is, “YES!” Well then, what happens when United
States senators fail to stand for truth, and bow their knee to the false
god of political correctness? Simple Christian moms and dads, grandmas
and grandpas, sons and daughters, must stand up for Jesus! ..."
"This simple act of biblical obedience has inspired and encouraged the
hearts of hundreds of thousands of Christians across this nation. It
has drawn a line in the sand that will have huge implications for the
general election of 2008. The Christian vote is not for sale.
Republicans you cannot depend upon us. If you can’t find it in yourself
to stand for Christ – we can’t find it in ourselves to vote for you. ..."
"The falsehood of Hinduism was eloquently challenged yesterday by
those who know the truth that sets people free - Jesus. We pray that
their lives will inspire many to do the same and call our nation to
repentance and to return to the God of our fathers. May the hallowed
halls and chambers of the Congress of the United States of America never
again entertain the false religions of this age." 2
Reactions to the event by others:
Two prominent religious activists demonstrated their opposing view of what
America cherishes. Both believe that religion should play a major role in the
nation. However, they differ on which religions should be allowed into the
public square to contribute.
|Tony Perkins, of the fundamentalist Christian advocacy
group Family Research Council, said in a statement on the day of the
"No one can legitimately challenge the fact that the God America
refers to in the pledge, our national motto, and other places is the
monotheistic God of the Jewish and Christian faith. ..."
"There is no historic connection between America and the polytheistic
creed of the Hindu faith. I seriously doubt that Americans want to
change the motto, 'In God we Trust,' which Congress adopted in 1955, to,
'In gods we Trust.' That is essentially what the United States Senate
did today." 3,4
|An article in the website of Americans United for Separation of
Church and State criticized the protesters:|
" 'This shows the intolerance of many Religious Right activists,'
said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, Americans United executive director. 'They
say they want more religion in the public square, but it’s clear they
mean only their religion'."
" 'America is a land of extraordinary religious diversity, and the
Religious Right just can’t seem to accept that fact,' Lynn continued. 'I
don’t think the Senate should open with prayers, but if it’s going to
happen, the invocations ought to reflect the diversity of the American
"Said AU’s Lynn, 'The Religious Right promotes a deeply skewed
version of American history. Our founders wanted separation of church
and state and full religious liberty for all faith traditions. The
episode today shows we still have a ways to go to achieve that goal."
The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above
essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.
- "Heathens force Senators to convert," Clipmarks, 2007-JUL-13, at:
- Eric Kleefeld, "Christian Right Activists Disrupt First Hindu Prayer In
Senate: "This Is An Abomination," TPMCafe, 2007-JUL-12, at:
- " 'In Gods we trust' in U.S. Senate. Hindu prayer makes history," NBC5
(Chicago), 2007-JUL-13, at:
- Tony Perkins, "Prayer to Whom?," Family Research Council, 2007-JUL-12, at:
- "Disruption Of Hindu Chaplain’s Senate Prayer Shows Religious Right’s
Intolerance, Says Americans United. Religious Right Activists Want Government To
Reflect Only Their Faith, Says AU’s Lynn," Americans United, 2007-JUL-12, at: