Senate Hindu Prayer Disrupted by Christian Activists
Some Christian zealots yesterday disrupted a Hindu invocation in the U.S. Senate. An embarrassing incident that will likely be played up around the world. Here’s how the Times of India reported it:
Christian activists briefly disrupted a Hindu invocation in the U.S Senate on Thursday, marring a historic first for the chamber and showing that fundamentalism is present and shouting in the U.S too.
Invited by the Senate to offer Hindu prayers in place of the usual Christian invocation, Rajan Zed, a Hindu priest from Reno, Nevada, had just stepped up to the podium for the landmark occasion when three protesters, said to belong to the Christian Right anti-abortion group Operation Save America, interrupted him by loudly asking for God’s forgiveness for allowing the ”false prayer” of a Hindu in the Senate chamber.
“Lord Jesus, forgive us father for allowing a prayer of the wicked, which is an abomination in your sight,” the first protester shouted. “This is an abomination. We shall have no other gods before You.”
Democratic Senator Bob Casey, who was serving as the presiding officer for the morning, immediately asked the sergeant-at-arms to restore order. But they continued to protest as they were headed out the door by the marshals, shouting, “No Lord but Jesus Christ!” and “There’s only one true God!”
There’s not much doubt that fundamentalism, much less shouting, is present in the U.S. Thankfully, even most fundamentalist Christians in America would condemn this rude interruption of someone else’s prayer. Toleration for other religious faiths is a cornerstone of our tradition.