Sylvia Allen, a Republican senator in Arizona is commenting on a new gun law to allow concealed carry permit holders to carry their guns into public buildings. Apparently, she thinks the new law is necessary because of the failure of all Americans to attend church on Sunday.
Speaking of the “horrible erosion of the soul of America,” Allen said, “We are slowly eroding religion at every opportunity we have… Probably we should be debating a bill requiring every American to attend a church of their choice on Sunday to see if we can get back to having a moral rebirth.”
Allen said she made a “flippant comment,” she said she wished the nation could go back to the 1950s when “people prayed; people went to church… I remember on Sundays the stores were closed. …The biggest thing is religion was kicked out of our public places, out of our schools.”
Though Allen, a Mormon, said that such a debate about a Sunday law “would never be allowed, and we would not even be debating that,” her comments underscore the latent, and perhaps longing desire of some to establish religious worship laws.
Allen is partly correct that the moral fiber of the United States is related to spiritual engagement and that much of that has been lost since the 1950s. However, legislating church attendance is not going to correct that problem. Religious worship laws make religion legal, not spiritual. “Lip service” to religious ideals in compliance with a coercive law will never bring moral reform. Instead, such laws will resurrect the persecutions of the Middle Ages.
Note that Allen’s comments did not suggest that such a Sunday worship law would be just for her state of Arizona, but would apply to all Americans.
While, at present, the idea of a church worship law would be rather unpopular in the United States, not to mention that it would be unconstitutional, after a few serious disasters and other crises, it could quickly come to the forefront. When it does,
“Yet this very class (teachers of religion), put forth the claim that the fast-spreading corruption is largely attributable to the desecration of the so-called “Christian sabbath,” and that the enforcement of Sunday observance would greatly improve the morals of society. This claim is especially urged in America, where the doctrine of the true Sabbath has been most widely preached.” The Great Controversy, page 588
“To secure popularity and patronage, legislators will yield to the demand for a Sunday law.” Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5, page 451
- Arizona Senator Sylvia Allen Vilified for Suggesting Law That Would Make Church Attendance on Sundays Mandatory