Once again a prayer before the state Legislature is creating controversy.
On Friday, Rev. Grady St. Dennis, the House chaplain, said the following prayer:
"Mindful that today marks the second anniversary of the oil explosion in the Gulf that erupted into one of the worst man-made disasters that our nation had ever faced and this Sunday, April 22, we celebrate Earth Day, I offer the following prayer. Let us pray. Creating and redeeming God, You spoke and there was light that shaped the world out of nothingness. From the ground of the earth, you formed people, trees, animals, all to be part of earth's community. The Gulf oil spill revealed our interconnectedness with all of your creation. When the Gulf suffered, so did we suffer. We pray for the ability to take care of your creation above our own needs, recognizing we have struggled to be good stewards. Continue to teach us how to care for your world and to be stewards of your creation. Amen."
That rubbed Alexandria Rep. Mary Franson (R-11B) the wrong way. That same afternoon Franson, who previously called Earth Day a “Pagan holiday,” tweeted:
“House Floor prayer today may as well been dedicated to "Mother Earth", coincidence? I think not. 2nd offensive prayer in a month. #mnleg”
Franson was also upset about a prayer “during gay advocacy group Outfront Minnesota's lobbying day at the Capitol,” according to City Pages.
Prayers are a recurring source of controversy at the Capitol. Last year, controversial pastor Bradlee Dean made waves when his prayer targeted those who don’t believe in Jesus. House leadership later said Dean’s prayer was inappropriate and a mistake.
What do you think? Is St. Dennis’ prayer offensive? Is Franson too quick to take offense? Tell us what you think in the comments below.