WHEREAS, Religious faith was not only important in American life during the periods of discovery, exploration, colonization and growth, but has also been acknowledged and incorporated into all three branches of American Federal Government from their very beginning; and WHEREAS, The Supreme Court of the United States affirmed this self-evident fact in a unanimous ruling declaring "This is a religious people... From the discovery of this continent to the present hour, there is a single voice making this affirmation"; and WHEREAS, The first act of America's first Congress in 1774 was to ask a minister to open with prayer and to lead Congress in the reading of four chapters of the Bible; and WHEREAS, The Liberty Bell was named for the Biblical inscription from Leviticus 25:10, which passage of scripture is emblazoned around it: "Proclaim liberty throughout the land, to all the inhabitants thereof"; and WHEREAS, In 1782, Congress pursued a plan to print a Bible that would be "a neat edition of the Holy Scriptures for the use of schools" and therefore approved the production of the first English language Bible printed in America that contained the congressional endorsement that "the United States in Congress assembled... recommend this edition of the Bible to the inhabitants of the United States"; and WHEREAS, In 1787, at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia, Benjamin Franklin declared, "God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid?... Without His concurring aid, we shall succeed in this political building no better than the builders of Babel"; and WHEREAS, In 1853, the United States Senate declared that the Founding Fathers "had no fear or jealousy of religion itself, nor did they wish to see us an irreligious people... they did not intend to spread over all the public authorities and the whole public action of the nation the dead and revolting spectacle of atheistical apathy"; and WHEREAS, Beginning in 1904 and continuing for the next half-century, the Federal Government printed and distributed The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth for the use of Members of Congress because of the important teachings it contained; and WHEREAS, The constitutions of each of the 50 states, either in the preamble or body, explicitly recognize or express gratitude to God; and WHEREAS, President Andrew Jackson declared that the Bible "is the rock on which our Republic rests"; and WHEREAS, President Abraham Lincoln declared that the Bible "is the best gift God has given to men... But for it, we could not know right from wrong"; and WHEREAS, President Franklin D. Roosevelt not only led the nation in a six-minute prayer during D-Day on June 6, 1944, but he also declared that "If we will not prepare to give all that we have and all that we are to preserve Christian civilization in our land, we shall go to destruction"; and WHEREAS, President John F. Kennedy declared that "The rights of man come not from the generosity of the state but from the hand of God"; and WHEREAS, Every other President has similarly recognized the role of God and religious faith in the public life of America; and WHEREAS, All sessions of the United States Supreme Court begin with the Court's Marshal announcing, "God save the United States and this honorable court"; and WHEREAS, Justice John Jay, and author of The Federalist Papers and original Justice of the United States Supreme Court, urged "The most effectual means of securing the continuance of our civil and religious liberties is always to remember with reverence and gratitude the Source from which they flow"; and WHEREAS, Numerous Supreme Court cases to include Church of the Holy Trinity vs. U.S. 143 U.S. 457 (1892) and U.S. vs. MacIntosh 283 U.S. 605 (1931) have affirmed that "this is a Christian nation" and "[w]e are a Christian people," respectively; and WHEREAS, Numerous others of the most important American government leaders, institutions, monuments, buildings and landmarks both openly acknowledge and incorporate religious words, symbols and imagery into official venues; and WHEREAS, The Northwest Land Ordinance (formally An Ordinance for the Government of the Territory of the United States, North-West of the River Ohio) of 1787 called for public education and required that "Religion, morality and knowledge being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall forever be encouraged;" and WHEREAS, The Declaration of Independence and other documents at the time of our nation's founding have numerous references to the role of God in our history as the terms "Nature's God" and Divine Providence are frequently used; and WHEREAS, When taking the oath of office for the President of the United States, George Washington concluded the oath by adding the phrase, "So help me, God," and this has been included in oaths by those taking public office since that time; and WHEREAS, It has been tradition that those taking an oath does so with his right hand on the Holy Bible; and WHEREAS, The stated purpose of 105 of the first 107 colleges in U.S. was to train and prepare ministers and preachers of the Holy Bible; and WHEREAS, The Holy Bible was frequently used as a textbook in both the schools and homes in the early days of our nation; and WHEREAS, A Principle reason for many who colonized the land that has become the United States was for religious freedom, and this still exists as immigrants continue to come here to leave religious persecution and to be able to worship as they desire; and WHEREAS, Presidential Proclamations calling for a National Day of Prayer and for Thanksgiving recognize the role of God in our nation, the blessings that we have received, and for our duty to give God thanks for these blessings; and WHEREAS, In times of greatest distress such as following the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, and the terror attacks of September 11, 2001, U.S. Presidents have implored the American people to call upon God; and WHEREAS, There have been attempts to change and distort our history;
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, That the month of July each year is designated as "American Christian History Month," to recognize the impact of religious beliefs on America's history; and be it further RESOLVED, That the rich spiritual and diverse religious history of our nation, from its founding to the current day be affirmed; and be it further RESOLVED, That any effort to remove, obscure, or purposely omit such history from our nation's public buildings and educational resources be rejected in the strongest manner.
Adopted by the CPPA State Committee on October 16, 2021