Jesus invoked during graduation ceremony..

During the commencement ceremony (graduate school), the priest during the prayer invoked Jesus Christ. I am not particularly bothered about organized religion. However, with several countries and faiths among the graduating class (in that first of three ceremonies about 400 students), I wonder if I am right in feeling that invoking a specific God is NOT OK, for that matter, should God even be called upon for a blessing.

What school was it?

I don’t think it would be cool at University of State X, but at Notre Dame, that’s a different story.

Wouldn’t a prayer be sufficient to cause alarm much more than invoking a certain diety?

Something tells me there’s more to this story…like the location.

My (university) graduation, we sang the national anthem (ie “we love Liz”) to the tune of “naaah naaah naaah”, precisely a tone flat. Only a bunch of music students would do that. :smiley:

grrrrrrrrr. using the words of "naaah naaaaah naaah "

The University of Akron, Ohio.

FTR, folks, the University of Akron is state-financed.

And their mascot is “Zippy the Kangaroo.” Just thought I’d mention it.

I can’t tell you whether you’re right in feeling what you feel but I don’t understand the big deal. We live in a diverse society and that means sometimes people are going to hear things they disagree with or don’t like. How come you’re not concerned for all the atheist who might not want to hear any prayer regardless of the deity invoked? If someone is making a prayer to invoke a blessing who do you think that blessing comes from?


You wonder whether you’re right? Don’t leftists have principles upon which they can make decisions for themselves? Or is it all just arbitrary, and they’re lost without the memos? Feel free to check with someone before you answer. :wink:

Apparently, the folks at Akron have a bigger problem than invoking God in the opening ceremony. Namely, that their administration is high.

As to the OP, no, it is not appropriate.

That was mean, Lib, but it brought me a smile (and I’m a “leftie” by US standards!) :slight_smile:

Q: Were there multiple denominational invocators, or just the one?

Lib- I hope I’m being whooshed here, but I don’t’ think the OP deserved this sort of snarky remark. Quite a few ‘leftists’ (and rightists, for that matter) tend to want to be sure that their gut feelings have some reasonable basis before going off on something. If we had more of this in political discourse, maybe we’d not have as much trouble as we do.

As you can read from this thread, reasonable people can disagree over the inclusion of a religious element to a public ceremony. I would personally feel a little uncomfortable, but unless it was part of a pervasive pattern of behavior to exclude minority groups, I’d let it slide. For some, invoking a religious blessing is very natural, and it’s not meant as an offense. Quite frankly, it’s just a placeholder activity in most ceremonies.

Of course, I’m currently residing in Arkansas, so a public blessing tends to be the least of my worries where religious oppression is concerned.

Well, I included a winkie to tone it down, and I’m sorry if I upset the OP, but the point remains — it is better to reason from the general to the specific, rather than the other way around.

I have no problem with prayer at public graduation events, I can understand not making the prayer too Deity-specific, however. I definitely am against censoring student messages of all Deity-specific expressions of faith, a problem with does occur with overly sensitive school administrators in some high schools.

That’s strange. Clergy led prayer (even non-sectarian prayers) at public school graduation exercises was declared unconsitituional in Lee v. Weisman, 505 U.S. 577 (1992). Maybe the school is using a circuit decision that gets around the Lee holding somehow, or maybe it’s one of those “nobody’s complained so it must be ok” things.

Generally speaking, a state-supported university is considered a different category of institution than a “public school”, and similarly its student body falls into a different category. “Public School” in the context of the Lee decision and in common everyday usage refers to the preK-thru-12 institutions where attendance is compulsory, admission must be open, and no tuition is charged.

Hmm…right it appears you are, JRDelirious. Ran across the relevant 6th Circuit case after posting, too. Chaudhuri v. Tennessee, 130 F. 3d 232 (6th Cir. 1997). I stand corrected.

So let me get this straight: A priest, ordained in a specific religion and perhaps denomination, is asked to pray at a graduation ceremony and you are surprised that he prayed to his Deity?? Which Deity, if any, did you expect him to pray to?

The man is a priest, he prays to a specific god.

The question is, why was he there at all? Why was a priest leading a prayer at a state school? Why can’t religion ever be personal, why does it have to be thrust into public things? Was there an imam there to give a blessing? A Buddhist monk? A rabbi? Why couldn’t the graduation ceremony just be a graduation ceremony, why does God have to be involved unless he/she/it had some specific part in the process (for everyone)?

Just the priest from the local church that is adjacent to the campus.
To clarify (I wrote the orginal post watching the RNC last night, so cant say I was all there) I do feel uncomfortable for myself and there must be others, that only one specific diety was invoked. I have been to some ceromonies in the past where the prayer though delivered by the local church priest was non specific as far as the diety is concerned.

If a specific diety is to be invoked, then why not a whole bunch? of course this will get the atheists in a tizzy.