Thursday, May 05, 2005

Before politics, beyond politics

Before this morning, I don't think I have ever been anywhere at six in the morning wearing a coat and tie.

Before my usual morning rituals of a one-mile walk, checking e-mail, driving to work, even before breakfast, I got dressed and made my way to Vision of Glory Lutheran Church in Plymouth for their eighth annual National Day of Prayer Breakfast. In the process of praying for our nation, I witnessed first-hand how our elected officials can lead in a realm beyond politics.

Just by his presence and by breaking bread with his constituents over breakfast, Sen. David Gaither (R-Plymouth), in whose district the event took place, made a statement: this is important, I stand with you.

As emcee, Sen. Michele Bachmann (R-Stillwater), who introduced the (unanimously passed) state Senate resolution for the Minnesota Day of Prayer, made a connection beyond political gain (both her state Senate district and the Sixth district for which she is a Congressional candidate, are far away from Plymouth).

By leading the assembly in prayer, both Sen. Gen Olson (R-Minnetrista) and Plymouth Mayor Judy Johnson exercised their freedom of religious expression without imposing their faith on anyone.

In his proclamation of Minnesota's Day of Prayer, Governor Tim Pawlenty said:
Whereas we know that our state has been strengthened by the conscience-based actions of people of faith from all walks of life; and

Whereas we know many of the challenges we face require a change of heart, which government cannot legislate or enforce, but which spiritual growth can bring about; and

Whereas our Constitution begins with the words, "We, the people of the state of Minnesota, grateful to God for our civil and religious liberty, and desiring to perpetuate its blessings and secure the same to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution,"

Now, therefore, I, Tim Pawlenty, do hereby proclaim Thursday, May 5, 2005 as Day of Prayer in the state of Minnesota and humbly encourage citizens of faith to turn to God as their understanding and beliefs direct, that we may open our hearts in thanksgiving for blessings received and to seek strength, wisdom and encouragement to build a better Minnesota for all our people.
We should be thankful for politicians who place something before, and above, mere politics.

No comments: