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Roger Sherman
Christian Statesman


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Here's what it says:

  • Roger Sherman was a Bible-believing Christian
  • His actions on the floor of the Constitutional Convention show that the Founders did not intend to secularize America

Until you send us this article, readers of this page will have to be content with the following dialogue on American OnLine's "Separation of Church and State" Discussion Board.

The Annals of Congress for Sept 25, 1789 record these discussions concerning the proclamation of a national day of Thanksgiving:

Mr [Elias] Boudinot said he could not think of letting the session pass over without offering an opportunity to all the citizens of the United States of joining with one voice in returning to Almighty God their sincere thanks for the many blessings He had poured down upon them. With this view, therefore, he would move the following resolution:

Resolved, That a joint committee of both Houses be directed to wait upon the President of the United States to request that he would recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a Constitution of government for their safety and happiness . . . .

Mr. [Roger] Sherman justified the practice of thanksgiving, on any signal event, not only as a laudable one in itself but as warranted by a number of precedents in Holy Writ: for instance, the solemn thanksgivings and rejoicings which took place in the time of Solomon after the building of the temple was a case in point. This example he thought worthy of Christian imitation on the present occasion; and he would agree with the gentleman who moved the resolution. Mr Boudinot quoted further precedents from the practice of the late Congress, [he was a member of the Continental Congress from 1778-79 and 1781-84 and President of the Continental Congress 1782-83] and hoped the motion would meet a ready acquiescence. [Boudinot was also founder and first president of the American Bible Society.] The question was now put on the resolution and it was carried in the affirmative.

On this very same day, Congress approved the final wording of the First Amendment.

William Jackman, in his History of the American Nation, Vol.8, p.2413, says of Sherman, "But for his broad tolerance, Sherman would have been a typical Puritan. . . ."

On the next page, Jackman says,

No better summary of his career can be given than the inscription upon the tablet which marks his resting place.

"In Memory of
Mayor of the City of New Haven,
And Senator of the United States.
He was born at Newtown in Massachusetts,
April 19, 1721.
And died in New Haven, July 23d, A. D. 1793,
Possessed of a strong, clear, penetrating mind, and
singular perseverance,
He became the self-taught scholar, eminent for
jurisprudence and policy.
He was nineteen years an assistant, and twenty-
three years a judge of the Superior Court,
in high reputation.
He was a delegate in the first Congress,
signed the glorious act of Independence,
And many years displayed superior talents and
ability in the national legislature.
He was a member of the general convention, approved
the federal constitution, and served his
country with fidelity and honor, in the
House of Representatives, and in the
Senate of the United States.
He was a man of approved integrity; a cool discerning
Judge; a prudent sagacious politician; a
true faithful and firm patriot.
He ever adorned the profession of Christianity
which he made in youth;
And distinguished through life for public usefulness,
Died in the prospect of a blessed immortality."

Would Sherman and other signers of the Founding Charters of America approve of a public school system in which non-sectarian prayer and Bible reading have no place?

Only the most dedicated Secularist or the most ignorant fool would say Yes.

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