Why we need a National Day of PrayerEditor:In a recent ruling, Wisconsin Federal Judge Barbara Crabb declared the National Day of Prayer to be unconstitutional. Our Founding Fathers, the framers of our Constitution, would be shocked to hear this. Although they clearly did not want to see the establishment of a state church, such as the Church of England (which still exists as an entity of British government), they never intended to suggest that the governance of this new nation should be carried out without any reference to divine guidance or without seeking God's blessing. In fact, history records that, during the days that they deliberated on the wording of that very Constitution, when agreement seemed impossible, they sought for God's guidance through prayer. It could be said, then, that our Constitution was born in prayer. From the very beginning of the United States Congress, both the House of Representatives and the Senate established an office of Chaplain, and have initiated every new legislative session with prayer since that time.The Founding Fathers were enlightened men -- and they were religious men. They believed that it was God's truth and justice that required them to declare independence and to form a new government. "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal. That they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among those are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness ..." There are other references to God in the Declaration, as well. More importantly, the Founding Fathers realized that the success or failure of this newly-formed nation would be determined by the spiritual and moral integrity of its people -- especially its leaders. George Washington, in his first Presidential proclamation for prayer, wrote, "It is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the Providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and to humbly implore His protection and favor ..." These words are as true today as they were in 1789!There will be many appeals to Judge Crabb's decision, and it will eventually reach the Supreme Court. It is impossible to tell what the court's ultimate decision will be, but even if they uphold this unfortunate ruling, it cannot be doubted that our nation needs, and should seek, the continued blessing of our Creator. We should continue to do this, even if it cannot be done under the official auspices of the federal government. This year, the National Day of Prayer is Thursday, May 6. At 6:30 p.m. that evening, we will observe the National Day of Prayer in Newcomerstown at a service to be held at Cy Young Memorial Park. Participants will include Mayor Steven Guy, Tuscarawas County Prosecutor Ryan Styer, the Newcomerstown Veterans' Honor Guard and the Newcomerstown High School Band. Prayers for our nation, for Ohio, and for our community and its people will be offered by members of the Newcomerstown Area Ministerial Association. There will be patriotic singing and free hot dogs for all who come. Please join us.Pastor Tom BarberPresidentNewcomerstown Area Ministerial Association Newcomerstown