Aurora Citizen

News & Views from the Citizens of Aurora Ontario

Politics & Religion

Posted by auroracitizen on September 20, 2009

We have received a number of anonymous comments/emails about the Aurora Mayors Prayer Breakfast (Oct 20 @ 7am – DiNardo’s) — intended as a “multi-faith” initiative.

A number of these emails suggest that this initiative does not embrace all faiths — or non-faith — and is really an inappropriate blending of politics and religion. This is something that has been observed in the US to varying degrees.

Do you think the Mayor should be engaged in this type of initiative — regardless of faith issues — or should Aurora politicians remain separate from anything that could be construed as religious based?

NOTE: Please do not post sections of emails — we will not post unless we have direct knowledge of the complete email and a source that confirms it’s authenticity. Your comment may remain anonymous on the blog, but we must have a copy of the email before posting your comment.

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37 Responses to “Politics & Religion”

  1. Pedantic said

    Bethesda's Hugo T. Kroon said…

    "What I am finding on this blog lately (more than just lately, actually) are many posters who are lacking in a basic sence of humour, coupled with the inability to dicern the same amongst others…"

    I find many posters lacking an ability to spell (eg. sense and discern).

  2. Hugo T. Kroon said

    White Knight said:
    "What I am finding on this blog lately are many posters who are quick to make assumptions and jump to conclusions."

    What I am finding on this blog lately (more than just lately, actually) are many posters who are lacking in a basic sence of humour, coupled with the inability to dicern the same amongst others…

  3. White Knight said

    To Hugo T Kroon
    I was alluding to when I was growing up and was always told at school and at home that discussion about religion, politics or sex were off limits if you wished the discussions to remain civil and cool.
    I have no problem with anger management and have no wish to trade in my friends for new ones. What I am finding on this blog lately are many posters who are quick to make assumptions and jump to conclusions.

  4. PArkview 7 said

    "Your assumption is a problem.
    But it serves your purpose, and that is useful for us to understand.

    Not a problem for us but may be a problem for you in ways that may be beyond your comprehension."

    Have you been taking Effective Communication classes with Stephen Granger, by any chance?

  5. Anonymous said

    To:
    "For someone who is constantly on this blog, you certainly enjoy "the problem" you continue to involve yourself with.

    September 23, 2009 7:04 AM"

    Your assumption is a problem.
    But it serves your purpose, and that is useful for us to understand.

    Not a problem for us but may be a problem for you in ways that may be beyond your comprehension.

  6. Hugo T. Kroon said

    White Knight said:
    "Politics and religion are two of the three topics that are taboo to discuss if you wish to remain calm and keep friends."

    With all due respect my good man, if that is true for you, you need anger management classes… and new friends.

  7. Lord grant us peace… said

    I have no problem with the Mayor openly supporting a Christian Prayer Breakfast that is open to all faiths. I’ve attended a few such events at the Royal York with people from all walks of life represented and I found these events to be inspirational. Let's hope the Mayor does as well.

    I trust that the opening prayer will likely pray for our leaders to find the grace of God and all that implies, which in our case will be most ironic under the circumstances.

    The Golden Rule is hardly being applied by our Mayor as much as she feels she is setting a new and higher standard for all of us to appreciate. The Bible has more than a few such examples of such hubris but learning this lesson is not always as easy as we would hope. That's where prayer comes in.

  8. Anonymous said

    To: "This comment illustrates the problem with this blog".

    For someone who is constantly on this blog, you certainly enjoy "the problem" you continue to involve yourself with.

  9. someone who loves this town more than politics said

    couldn't agree with Broderick more.

    and it is interesting how all these events are branded

    "the Mayor's (insert event here)."

    definitely shows that she puts the town before herself

  10. Elizabeth Bishenden said

    So, here's the question. If the Mayor of Aurora appeared to be an Evangelical Christian, would it affect your vote in November 2010?

  11. Anonymous said

    "I think the mayor and GOS are the anonymous contributors….because your anger is directed more at the blog than the post. "

    This comment illustrates the problem with this blog.

  12. Broderick Epps said

    I like most have no problem with Ms. Morris or any other Mayor going to or having their name attached to such an event.
    My problem will be come election time when Ms Morris tries to spin her involvement as some delusional proof she is the mayor for all.

  13. White Knight said

    To "Leave religion out of it"
    I agree with you wholeheartedly. Politics and religion are two of the three topics that are taboo to discuss if you wish to remain calm and keep friends.

  14. Anonymous said

    To: "Let all religious people stand up for their beliefs"…
    Your reaction to this post asking a question is exactly how differences of opinions turn into wars (something like the council meetings). Read the post. The way I read it suggests that conversations have been taking place about this topic. It has been chosen as a topic to discuss.If you are so passionate about your beliefs why not write a post that will stimulate interest…just like this one has? You seem more interested in putting down the blog and using this post to do so. I think the mayor and GOS are the anonymous contributors….because your anger is directed more at the blog than the post. There is nothing wrong with open discussion. If you don't like the fact that there are people who like our current council and mayor, and those who don't, you probably shouldn't visit this blog. It's all telling, when you state your opinion, and then comment on the blog…too funny. Get on with town business. You know who you are. Spend less time on this site and more time preparing for election time, because your going to need it!

  15. Anonymous said

    To Anonymous Sept 21st-7:22

    " Anything good that this mayor does is trashed"

    Give me a break, this mayor has done nothing to improve Aurora.She has made us the laughing stock of York Region, Ontario and Canada with her firings and staff leaving.Her handling of the Buck issue has created the biggest rift in any council in Aurora's history.
    Her self serving adgenda has pitted her GOS against Councillor Buck,Collins and McRoberts ( who did get the most votes in the last election.
    Nothing good has come from this council other than the fact that we should now know that this mayor and council have to go.
    Perhaps the GOS who write on this blog trying to defend the mayor should go public with their statements unless they are worried about doing so.

  16. Leave religion out of it said

    It is obvious from this thread that politics and religion do not mix.
    A lesson for Mayor Morris perhaps.

  17. Anonymous said

    Not clear how asking a simple question about whether politics and religion should be co-mingled has been turned into this blog putting down religion. Seemed like a fair question.

    The second issue was whether the initiative was all encompassing. Again, this seems to be asking whether everyone felt included.

    What seems unfair is the reaction because the question was asked.

  18. Anonymous said

    Let all religious people stand up for their beliefs.

    This blog is trying to put us down.

  19. Anonymous said

    Good for Mayor Morris for having the courage of her beliefs.
    More than a lot of others can say.
    Some beliefs are bigger than politics.
    I'm proud of her!

  20. Junius said

    While I fully endorse the spirit of what Robert the Bruce has to say, it would appear that the Mayor's Prayer Breakfast is anything but an all-faith
    event.

    Bob Callow, the event Chair has been quoted as saying "This is a Christian event to which anyone of any faith is welcome to attend. This was proclaimed publicly at an Aurora Town Council Meeting which was televised and broadcast to all of our community as part of the Council Meeting."

    (Mr. Moderator – as a side note, things I have heard and seen imply that non-Christians are definitely not welcome – however, I am not at liberty to divulge this, so you may delete this comment).

    The headline tag of the flyer that has been published states: "Prayer as the Foundation of a Peaceful and Secure Community". A truly laudable statement, and one that any considered person would agree with.

    Yet, contrast that with the tag (or quote) at the bottom of the flyer: "I encourage all Political Leaders, Business Leaders, Aurora Residents, Christians and the Community to come together" – Mayor Phyllis Morris.

    I would suggest that this pretty much implies that this is not an ecumenical event, but an exclusionary event, and the patent politicization (and not just by the Mayor) of this event is wholly inappropriate.

    I have spoken with a few people of other faiths, and their reaction is "what about us?" I have spoken with those of the Christian faith and some (not all) are appalled at this non-ecumenical approach.

    As Robert the Bruce points out, the Queen is both the titular Head of State,and the Supreme Governor of the Church of England. At best, I think that is a bit of a disingenuous piece of logic to support the Mayor of Aurora
    promoting the Prayer Breakfast. The Queen comes to these positions by right of birth – as opposed to political opportunism.

    I would suggest that composition of those who voted for the Mayor would represent all faiths and
    it is passing strange that she would willfully snub those who are not Christian.

  21. Anonymous said

    "Obama explained: "Applying [faith-based] values to policymaking must be done with principles that are accessible to all people, religious or not. Even so, those who enter the public square are not required to leave their beliefs at the door."
    I agree!

  22. Anonymous said

    Mayor Morris gets my support on this one.
    I understand this site is trying to put the mayor down.
    Not if I have anything to do with it.

    I am an active supporter of religion and faith. It saved me.

    I will be working for Mayor Morris for sure.

  23. Anonymous said

    I think this blog is negative.
    I support the mayor in this endeavor.

    This blog is in my prayers.
    God help us all.
    This is serious stuff.

    Some people want to destroy what is good in this community.
    I say NO WAY!

  24. Anonymous said

    We've talked and decided we need to take a stand for religion.
    This blog is open to all.
    We say give God a chance to rid your hearts of revenge and destruction.

  25. Anonymous said

    Either people are being silly on this thread, or they truly are praying. Either way, it just goes to prove for me that Mayor Morris shouldn't involve the office of the mayor in such matters. Why bother when there are so many other ways to build community?
    Let any or all of the faiths build their communities without the questionable leadership of Mayor Morris.

  26. Anonymous said

    "Now I understand what people have told me about this blog"….
    Why do you bother involving yourself with this blog?
    If you need to add this negative comment, after you have given your opinion…you are as bad as everyone else you are complaining about.

  27. Anonymous said

    I'm all for Mayor Morris taking a stand for faith.
    I didn't feel good about the Councilor Buck thing but now it is easy for me to stand 100% behind Mayor Morris.
    I'm praying for Aurora and this blog.

  28. For Heaven's sake, what next? said

    "Religion", "Faith" or "Spirituality" is NOT the leadership we need from this Mayor.
    The Mayor needs to get on with the business of this town.

  29. Anonymous said

    This thread is digusting!
    I've paid no attention before but now I understand what the mayor is up against.

    Anything good that the mayor does is trashed here.

  30. Anonymous said

    Are you so desperate to find things to complain about?

    I am a Christian and I am shocked that this is going on on this blog.

    A little more compassion for the human condition is not a bad thing.
    Faith empowers me. What enpowers you?

    Now I understand what people have told me about this blog.

  31. Walt said

    I went to one of these things in Markham. Great if you're an evangelical or fundementalist, totally pointless if you're not.

    i had to get my mainline-protestant clergy friend to stop rolling his eyes when something particularly silly or dumb was said, as it was attracting attention to our table.

  32. Anonymous said

    I think her Mayorship is doing everything to keep her profile as "positive" in the community.
    While I have no problem with her attending any "faith" event, I don't think she should be "leading" anything of the like.

  33. Anonymous said

    White Knight says,
    "However, I guess politicians such as our mayor will cozy up to anyone,any group or any function in the hope that there is a photo op or to garner any potential votes."

    On what basis is this a fair comment?
    It seems mean-spirited to me and it is this type of comment that turns people off this blog.

    On the other hand Robert the Bruce gave me food for thought.

  34. Anonymous said

    I don't have a problem with the Mayor practising whatever religion she chooses, but I'm not sure it's right to use the title of the public office she holds in support of one religion over the other. The whole thing could get messy in a hurry. I'd rather be safe than sorry especially where politics and religion are intertwined.

  35. Robert the Bruce said

    I may not be a Constitutional expert (in fact I know that I am not), but I do not think that the Canadian Constituion Act says anything about the separation of church and state in this country. In fact, the head of the this country is also the head of the Church of England (HRH Queen Elizabeth) and every MP and Senator pledges an oath of allegiance to the her.

    Section 2 of the Candian Bill of Rights guarantees Freedom of Religion.

    The constitution of the United States (1st Ammendment) clearly defines that there is a separation between chruch and state.

    I personally do not have a problem with this Prayer Breakfast as long as it is inclusive to all faiths and is not used to promote any Town-mandated agenda. To say that it is not including "non-faiths" is a silly statement as it would be an oxy-moron to include agnostics at a prayer breakfast.

    Fuimus

  36. White Knight said

    I believe in the separation of church (religion) and state (politics). However, I guess politicians such as our mayor will cozy up to anyone,any group or any function in the hope that there is a photo op or to garner any potential votes.

  37. Elizabeth Bishenden said

    It's interesting to think of some politicians respecting a Higher Power. There seem to be many politicians hoping to dispense advice rather than receive wisdom.

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