Defense of Coach Who “Takes a Knee”
A football coach, suspended for leading silent, short, on-field prayers after football games, has gained the support of several government leaders. Joe Kennedy, assistant high-school football coach in Bremerton, WA, had traditionally knelt in prayer in the middle of the football field after each game, taking a moment to pray and thank God. At times, players voluntarily joined him. But the Bremerton School District officials suggested that he continue his seven-year tradition in a private place. When he refused to comply, they relieved him of his coaching duties in October 2015. Senator James Lankford, co-chair of the Congressional Prayer Caucus, defended Coach Kennedy’s actions from the U.S. Senate floor and lamented that the Bremerton School District has wrongfully attempted to create a “faith-free zone.” Lea Carawan, executive director, Congressional Prayer Caucus Foundation, notes that several Congressional leaders are paying attention. She explains, “We could just count this as another disappointing loss, feel powerless over the growing tide of anti-faith actions around the country, and simply move on with our lives; or we can decide that it’s time to band together, focus on proactive solutions, and promote truth and honorable action. Remaining silent, or on the sidelines, only sends the message that the Christian community is unconcerned about what’s taking place.” She reports that members of the Congressional Prayer Caucus have led a determined effort to garner support for Coach Kennedy. They sent a strong letter, signed by 47 members of Congress, to the superintendent and principal of the school. “This is not a time to merely play the role of spectators, but to pray and follow the lead of our national leaders,” adds Carawan. The Congressional Prayer Caucus, an official caucus of the United States Congress, has 100 members, and the Congressional Prayer Caucus Foundation has a network of thousands of praying legislators and citizens. (C) 2015 Prayer Connect.