Indiana Legislature Ordered to Stop Using Jesus’ Name in Opening Prayer

December 15, 2005

Source: The Boston Globe

On December 15, 2005 The Boston Globe reported, "A federal judge's order that the Indiana Legislature stop using the name Jesus Christ in its 188-year practice of holding an opening prayer has sparked protests from residents, politicians, and clergy. Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma said yesterday that he will appeal the ruling, which an Indianapolis Star newspaper editorial previously criticized as 'terribly intolerant.' Some pastors are refusing to lead invocation prayers to a 'generic' God in the Legislature... 'The forces that want to take religious faith out of our government and our society are nibbling away at our liberty,' Bosma, a Republican, said of the Nov. 30 ruling by US District Judge David Hamilton in Indianapolis... Hamilton ordered Bosma as speaker to instruct leaders of the invocation prayer to use non-sectarian words and refrain from using Christ's name, title, or other denominational appeal. Bosma is seeking to have the order suspended, saying it gives the Legislature no clear standard for application... The criticism crosses party lines. House minority leader Patrick Bauer, 61, a Democrat from South Bend who preceded Bosma as speaker, has said he supports an appeal."