A House Resolution Not to be Forgotten
Representative Rick Saccone, prime sponsor of the H.R. 535, the “Year of the Bible” resolution, and the other 192 members of the PA House of Representatives who supported it, might not be aware of this, or they might not want you to know about it.
Another resolution was introduced into the House that probably was considered non-controversial by some of the Christian members at the time.
It was part of a national effort to encourage Congress to amend the preamble of the secular U.S. Constitution–to turn it into a religious document by adding an invocation to God and an acknowledgement of “benign Providence.” The prime sponsor argued that such an amendment was not sectarian and was “recognized by all descriptions of Christians.”
The date of the final vote: February 26, 1817
The prime sponsor: Rev. William Rogers, a Philadelphia clergyman, professor and former Continental Army chaplain.
The final vote: 22-64, roundly defeating the resolution and its otherwise respected sponsor.
Among the reasons for its defeat, according to a press report at the time: “it was not right to mix religion with politics.”
PA Nonbelievers, central Pennsylvania’s leading organization of atheists, agnostics, and humanists, encourages you to read the attached document. The critical effort to keep God separate from government is nothing new. It’s as old as the nation itself.