Dear Allied Attorneys:
In the wake of the recently announced United States Supreme Court opinion in Town of Greece, New York v. Galloway, in which the Court affirmed the right of legislative bodies to open their public meetings with prayer, we have received many requests from Allied Attorneys and others for information that would assist them in counseling and encouraging public bodies in their prayer practices. To that end, Alliance Defending Freedom has posted on its website an informational letter, explaining and analyzing the Town of Greece decision, as well as a model prayer policy that comports with the Supreme Court’s holding.
These documents can be found on our public website at www.alliancedefendingfreedom.org Once there, click on “Key Issues,” then on “Religious Liberty,” then on “We The People Pray.” Once you’re in the “We The People Pray” website, the link marked “Legal Update” will provide you the informational letter and the link marked “Model Prayer Policy” will provide you the model policy.
These documents are provided for your use. Please use them freely to educate yourself and others and to provide encouragement and assistance to your local legislative bodies. The Town of Greece decision will mean nothing if legislative bodies don’t take advantage of it to exercise their right to pray. To that end, please encourage your local deliberative bodies to continue their prayer policies in accord with the Court’s decision, or to resume prayer policies that your local deliberative bodies might have earlier discontinued under the misconception that legislative prayer was constitutionally problematic.
In addition to providing these documents, Alliance Defending Freedom stands ready to assist you in a variety of ways in your efforts to preserve legislative prayer. We will assist you and government attorneys, both in responding to legal threats over prayer practices and in crafting prayer policies. Together, we can take full advantage of the Town of Greece opinion to preserve public prayer.
One thing we ask, is that you report to us any information you acquire concerning, either, a deliberative body’s adoption of a public invocation policy, or a public body’s resumption of a public prayer practice that was earlier discontinued. By keeping track of such events, we can measure the on-the-ground affect of the Supreme Court’s decision.
Finally, if you have any of your own ideas as to how to get the message of the Town of Greece decision out to legislative bodies – whether city or town councils, county commissions, or otherwise – or how to encourage such bodies to institute or resume prayer practices, please let us know. There is wisdom and safety in a multitude of counselors.
As always, thank you for standing with us as, together, we fight to keep the doors open for the spread of the Gospel.
Alliance Coordination Team