Parliament will open with a new prayer on Tuesday after the Speaker of the House listened to criticism about him removing mentions of the Queen and Jesus Christ.
While the Queen is back in the new version to be read ahead of Question Time next week, references to Jesus Christ are still on the chopping block.
The National Party had demanded the Speaker reinstate the old parliamentary prayer and properly consult with MPs before removing mentions of the Queen and Jesus Christ for good.
While I agree with the substance of the changes Mallard made, I also agree with the criticism over the process. He should have consulted on proposed changes and then made a decision. Instead he made a unilateral decision to change the prayer and then consulted on it.
It’s good to see he has heeded the criticism.
The old and new versions are:
THE CURRENT PRAYER:
Humbly acknowledging our need for Thy guidance in all things, and laying aside all private and personal interests, we beseech Thee to grant that we may conduct the affairs of this House and of our country to the glory of Thy holy name, the maintenance of true religion and justice, the honour of the Queen, and the public welfare, peace, and tranquillity of New Zealand, through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Almighty God, we give thanks for the blessings which have been bestowed on New Zealand.
Laying aside all personal interests, we pray for guidance in our deliberations, that we may conduct the affairs of this House with wisdom and humility, for the public welfare and peace of New Zealand.
I muchprefer the proposed version.