November 2011 Church & State | AU Bulletin

An Australian public school that dropped the Lord’s Prayer from its assemblies has been overwhelmed with hate mail.

The Education Department said the Edgewater Primary School has been inundated with abusive emails and phone calls from all over the country after it dropped the 25-year-old tradition of reciting the Christian prayer, according to a Sept. 22 report by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).

“We are getting comments like ‘I’ll meet you in the grave,’ you know, real loony stuff,” Stephen Breen, president of the Western Australian Primary Principals’ Association said, according to ABC.

Western Australia Humanist Society President Diana Warnock agreed with the decision to end the prayer.

“I think it’s completely inappropriate for them to have any kind of prayer,” she said, according to a report in the West Australian. “If you want your child to have a religious education, you send them to a religious school.”

Liberal MP Peter Abetz, a Christian minister, disagreed with the school’s decision, saying it was “pandering to the minority,” according to the newspaper.

“The Lord’s Prayer is part of our heritage,” he said. “It’s a bit like learning the national anthem. If somebody has a conscientious objection to saying the prayer they can just remain silent.”