Casino Prayer Getting Lots of Attention

A prayer by a Kentucky Baptist pastor is getting a lot of attention here in Kentucky these days.

Dr. Hershael York, pastor of Buck Run Baptist Church in Frankfort and a former Kentucky Baptist Convention president, had the opportunity to pray just before a joint session of the Kentucky General Assembly on Jan. 17. The joint session was being held in order for Gov. Steve Beshear to make an address regarding the state budget during which he proposed allowing up to nine casinos in the Commonwealth.

Dr. York used his time to petition God to grant wisdom and discernment to the legislators and very specifically mentioned the gambling proposal.

“Help us to admit that we cannot truly love our neighbor as ourselves and then scheme to get his money by enticing him with vain hope,”  he prayed. “May [legislators] not lead this state to share profits from an industry that preys on greed or desperation.”

“Help us to foster salaries and not slot machines, to build cars and enable jobs — not license casinos and seduce the simple into losing what they have. May their greatest concern not be that we get our share of the family’s losses, but that we foster a sense of hope and justice that creates opportunity and leads to success.”

The prayer got an immediate response from pro-gambling legislators whose hearts were pricked by the pastor’s words and York has since been in demand by news media outlets interested in the prayer.

Click here to see a news story about the prayer from LEX 18 – TV in Lexington.

Click here for coverage from the State Journal in Frankfort.

Click here to read a blog post about the prayer from KET’s Bill Goodman.

Click here to read a Lexington Herald-Leader piece about the prayer.

Baptist Press has now taken the prayer story beyond Kentucky with a news story released Jan. 19.

Click here to read the Baptist Press release.

Dr. York doesn’t need to be the only one praying for the legislature. This year’s General Assembly is facing both a very difficult budget and ferocious lobbying by the gambling industry. Please keep these men and women — as well as Gov. Beshear — in your prayers.

The legislators also need to know that you are praying for them and that citizens will be behind them when they take a courageous stand against the big gambling corporations.

Please call the toll-free Legislative Message Line at (800) 372-7181 and leave a kind but firm phone message for your state senator. (The receptionist will help you with who your senator is when you tell her your county). Leave this message: “Stand against any expansion of gambling.”

The message line is open 7 a.m. – 11 p.m. EST Monday through Thursday and 7 a.m.-6 p.m. on Friday.

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