Like Congress, state legislatures, and local communities across America, the town of Greece, NY, opens its town board meetings with prayer. Any town resident can pray, regardless of their faith. Although the Supreme Court explicitly upheld this practice of legislative prayer in the 1983 case Marsh v. Chambers, militant secularists are attempting to banish this practice nationwide as it has existed for over 200 years. The arguments presented on both sides before the Supreme Court in Galloway could impact every aspect of faith in public life and the public square, as this is Ground Zero for the war on Americans of traditional faith -- especially observant Christians-and the increasing attacks on Christmas and other longstanding celebrations of faith. Galloway could become the most important Establishment Clause case decided by the Supreme Court in decades.
Ken Klukowski is Director of the Center for Religious Liberty at the Family Research Council. A national-bestselling author and constitutional lawyer, Klukowski is on faculty at Liberty University School of Law and senior legal analyst for Breitbart News. A frequent commentator for national media outlets, his scholarly works and legal briefs have been cited by top federal courts and law journals nationwide.
Annual Family Research Council Witherspoon Lecture
This lecture is named for the Rev. John Witherspoon, a pastor and educator during the Revolutionary era whose commitment to the cause of Christ was unwavering.
He was also a dedicated patriot, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and a member of the Continental Congress from 1776 through 1782. A drafter of the Articles of Confederation, Rev. Witherspoon was a staunch advocate for the adoption of the Constitution while he served in the New Jersey state legislature.
Rev. Witherspoon was an astute student of both human nature and government, and understood the correlation between private character and public policy. "The people in general ought to have regard to the moral character of those whom they invest with authority either in the legislative, executive, or judicial branches," he wrote. "Those who wish well to the State ought to choose to places of trust men of inward principle."
The Witherspoon Lecture is an annual event that highlights the life and legacy of this great Christian and patriot, and is given by someone FRC believes is carrying on Witherspoon's tradition of faithful Christian witness and effective public engagement.