Tuesday, 24 September 2013


Were you part of the generation which pledged allegiance to the flag and said or heard "The Lord's Prayer" in school? It might seem like ancient history to children today but there was a time when these classroom activities were commonplace.

During grade one, we had to sing "O Canada" each morning before the teacher started her lesson. I assume it was supposed to create patriotism in us children. All I remember was that we were supposed to sing that song, not that it meant anything to me.

We also were instructed to say The Lord's Prayer, doubtless with the same idea of making us good little boys and girls. Not until I gave my life to Christ in August of 1969 did the words have any special meaning.

When I was sent to Jericho Hill School for the Deaf and Blind, Our teacher read from the Bible before starting the day's lesson. The King James version is difficult enough for grown-ups to understand but it was doubly so for us. I forget which book of the Bible the teacher read from but it was incomprehensible to me. We would have been better served if she read from the gospels or the historical parts of the Old Testiment. The next year, the Bible readings mercifully ended.

I wrote previously about having to stand and listen to a record of The Lord's Prayer being sung. I was a born again Christian by the time I was mainstreamed into the public school system so the prayer meant more to me than the other kids. Even so, I understood their boredom about having to listen to some old man bellowing away to a totally uncool band. If they played a rock version, I think everybody would have enjoyed it more.

Having heard the pro and con arguments about religious activities in schools, I've come to the conclusion that children shouldn't be forced to partake in them during class time. Instead of teaching The Ten Commandments and reciting The Lord's Prayer, I believe it would be better if the concept of the "golden rule" be the basis for all lessons pertaining to moral issues. Imagine how much nicer attending school would be if pupils were taught to do to others only what they'd like done to them. Just that one rule would make life so much better.

Social studies classes should teach in a matter-of-fact way about people's beliefs but not hold one above the rest. Students would be better served by understanding why certain groups believe what they believe so that they don't form harmful opinions.

By the way, a Christian death-metal group named Vengeance recorded their version of The Lord's Prayer If I could have gone back in time and played this version over the public address system, I'm sure it would have blown everybody's minds.

I wrote extensively about my faith in Christ in my newly-published memoir, How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity. Please check it out at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Virtual Bookworm.