The issue of prayer before our football games is not over. Below, I have shared with you a copy of the letter my son, a junior at Arab High School, presented to Arab City Schools’ interim superintendent Patrick Crowder.
My son’s request was denied with not even 24 hours consideration...
October 20, 2019
I am writing to request your permission for myself to say a prayer of encouragement over the public address system during pregame of the Arab varsity football game on Friday, Oct. 25, 2019.
I have been an Arab High School Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) leader since my freshman year and had the honor of serving as an FCA Intern for Northeast Alabama this past summer.
I understand that prayer before the football game was stopped by an earlier superintendent after a threat from a nontheistic group out of Wisconsin, the Freedom from Religion Foundation (FFRF).
According to their website, this group prides itself in promoting the absence of belief in God. In contrast, the mission of FCA is “to lead every coach and athlete into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ.”
Although I do not play a sport, I am a percussionist in the AHS band. I am unashamed to be a believer in and follower of Christ.
Our FCA values are integrity, serving, teamwork, and excellence.
I have seen posters in some of my classes that define our school system as one that values integrity, excellence, relationships and service to our community.
I believe that the Arab City School system values are much more closely aligned with those of FCA than with those of FFRF.
In closing, I once again ask for your permission to represent Arab High School’s chapter of FCA and issue a prayer of encouragement over the loud speaker at our last home game of this 2019 football season.
Regardless of threats that have come and may come again, the Lord will fight on our behalf just as he did for Judah, in the Old Testament. His words to them in 2 Chronicles 20:15 are for us as well: “Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.”
Joshua James Plunkett