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Old 09-05-2006, 10:01 PM   #1
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Post-Game Prayer

I watched the second half of the Florida State/Miami game last night on ESPN. The game was held at the University of Miami's (a private school) home stadium, The Orange Bowl. Florida State won.

After the post game interviews on the field of head coaches and key players, the cameras showed many of the players of both teams, and some of their coaches and trainers, kneeling on the field in a post-game prayer. These prayers are not mandatory and are in fact led by student athletes. There were quite a few players and coaches from both at various parts of the field who were not pariticpating for various reasons (not necessarily religious objection/exclusionary reasons).

I am no fan of either of these teams and have always considered them to specialize in thuggery, but I thought this was a pleasant act of the bonds of sportsmanship. I frequently see it at Alabama and Auburn games that I attend as well.

Now, without getting into the debate of "don't pray on the street corners," what do you think of this assembly and religious activity? If you say "Christians shouldn't do that anyway because the Bible says not to pray on street corners," then you are missing my point, because I am not wanting to discuss the religious merits of it. From a social and civil perspective, what does everyone think? Should it be allowed? Should the ESPN cameras show it?

~U2Alabama
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Old 09-05-2006, 10:06 PM   #2
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How do we know they weren't looking for a contact lens?

Seriously, I don't see anything wrong with this. Why would anyone?
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Old 09-05-2006, 10:14 PM   #3
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Most contact lenses are disposable these days and I don't think that all of those people would go to that much trouble. Besides, it had been raining through much of the game on a hot, humid Miami night and I would suspect they were anxious to hit the showers.

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Old 09-05-2006, 11:34 PM   #4
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Ah, droll Bama is back

The only places I dont like prayer is in the workplace and in the government sector. Anywhere else can do whatever they like.
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Old 09-06-2006, 12:05 AM   #5
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Well, if the University of Miami is a private school and ESPN is a private cable network, there's nothing stopping them from an ethical POV.

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Old 09-06-2006, 12:30 AM   #6
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Actually it's been going on in both the college and professional ranks for some time. Occasionally you will also see it when a player is seriously injured and remains on the ground for some time.
The practice was not readily accepted at first by the old-school "winning isn't everything, it's the only thing"," don't fraternize with the enemy" type mentality. You know, the people that can't put sports in it's proper prospective.

Unrelated but perhaps interesting. As most auto racing facilities are privately owned it's common practice, at least in Indiana, for a prayer to be delivered during pre-race ceremonies over the public address system. Which never fails to baffle European visitors to the U.S. Grand Prix.
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Old 09-06-2006, 01:10 AM   #7
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I think it's great -- as long as they don't pressure others into it.

I have to say it's inspiring to see a group of athletes humble themselves in recognition that there's something bigger than a game going on.
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Old 09-06-2006, 08:23 AM   #8
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I see nothing wrong with it, it is freely chosen and I can't imagine anyone being pressured into it or feeling excluded if they choose not to participate. And I don't think the schools or ESPN are displaying an ethical pov by showing the prayers or any other religious gesture. Is a pov being displayed by showing or not showing the national anthem? My local station doesn't show the anthem before baseball games, it's just their practice - for time reasons I would assume. I don't know for sure what the reason is. What about showing the singing of God Bless America that takes place now in pro baseball games?

I am not one to promote or advocate anyone forcing beliefs onto anyone else, I just don't see how the college prayer thing would be doing that. If it was a graduation requirement obviously that would be completely wrong. If you go to a Catholic or some other Christian college you might have religion courses as part of a grad requirement, that is different.

I'm sure if they were state schools there would be issues raised.

Personally I like to see athletes blessing themselves or whatever in professional games too. It's more pleasant to look at than looking at them adjusting themselves Many pro teams, from what I have read, have Christian or whatever other types of groups which meet off the field. No one is pressured to join or ostracized in any way, as far as I know.
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Old 09-06-2006, 11:01 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by Angela Harlem
The only places I dont like prayer is in the workplace and in the government sector. Anywhere else can do whatever they like.
if you want to get technical, for any coaches/trainers involved, the football field is the workplace...

and when done on the professional level, it's the workplace for the players, too.



it's not forced on anyone, it's strictly voluntary, i see no problem with it.
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Old 09-06-2006, 10:48 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by melon
Well, if the University of Miami is a private school and ESPN is a private cable network, there's nothing stopping them from an ethical POV.

Melon
But herein lies the "various secenarios" concept of the situation. What about the Florida STATE University players, coaches and trainers? Should they be allowed to participate in the post-game prayer, on their own volition? What if it is on the field at Doak Campbell Stadium on the FSU campus?

Last year, I was at the University of Florida (state institution) at University of Alabama (state institution) game at Bryant-Denny Stadium on the Alabama campus in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. It was the loudest game I had ever been to until Tyrone Prothro broke his leg in the play below:



As the medical personnel rushed out and tended to him, the stadium became as silent as I had ever experienced it. Most of the players from both teams, by now situated on the sidelines, knelt and began to pray. Is this wrong?

~U2Alabama
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Old 09-06-2006, 11:00 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by U2Bama



As the medical personnel rushed out and tended to him, the stadium became as silent as I had ever experienced it. Most of the players from both teams, by now situated on the sidelines, knelt and began to pray. Is this wrong?

~U2Alabama
No, why would it be? It's not being aired audio wise, it's not sponsoring a certain religion, etc...
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Old 09-06-2006, 11:01 PM   #12
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I'm always a bit discomforted by such open displays of prayer. Perhaps it's because I'm always reminded of the parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector (Luke 18:10-14). And, yes, I do believe that false modesty is a form of self-righteousness.

However, I have to look at this situation objectively. The Supreme Court, long ago, determined that colleges were not under the same pressure to be wholly secular as public elementary and high schools, because it was expected that, as adults, you are mature enough to be around different religions and not feel pressured to convert. As long as these state institutions have fully secular policies that fully protect the rights of the "non-believer," I'm not bothered by unofficial displays of non-compulsory prayer. Public universities have long displayed a level of maturity that local school districts have long eluded.

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Old 09-06-2006, 11:18 PM   #13
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Although I do not agree with your application of the parable of the Pharisee & the tax collector in this particular context of prayer, I do agree with your objective analysis of prayer in a collegiate venue.

~U2Alabama
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