I stumbled across this quote today. It is from an article by President Marion G. Romney, Second Counselor in the First presidency. “America’s Promise,” New Era, Mar 1980, 4
As I read this quote, I was reminded that some of the problems we are experiencing today have been around for many years.
"Some years ago reference was made on a local editorial page to “a super-duper, eager-beaver atheist” who “does not like Christianity” at all, “and is out to destroy it. … In a national magazine [this atheist] is quoted as thundering from her ‘pulpit’: ‘Churches are leeches. …’
“Now that she has moved on prayer and Bible reading in U.S. public schools,” the editorial continues, “her next targets, it appears, are tax-exemptions for churches, ousting chaplains from the armed services and omission of ‘God’ in courtroom oaths, on money and in the pledge of allegiance.” (Norman Vincent Peale, Deseret News and Telegram, 3 July 1964.)
An article in a recent magazine advanced and argued the thesis that America is no longer “the Christian land of the Pilgrims.”
In distinguishing communism from the United Order, President David O. McKay said that communism is Satan’s counterfeit for the gospel plan, and that it is an avowed enemy of the God of the land. Communism is the greatest anti-Christ power in the world today and therefore the greatest menace not only to our peace but to our preservation as a free people. By the extent to which we tolerate it, accommodate ourselves to it, permit ourselves to be encircled by its tentacles and drawn to it, to that extent we forfeit the protection of the God of this land.
Relying on that part of the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States which reads, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” the United States Supreme Court has ruled against Bible reading and prayer in public schools. By so doing, said President David O. McKay, “the Supreme Court of the United States severs the connecting cord between the public schools of the United States and the source of divine intelligence, the Creator himself,” who, of course, is the God of this land (Relief Society Magazine, Dec. 1962, p. 878).
Now, of course, we all believe and wholeheartedly support the separation of church and state; but we must not let this wresting of the First Amendment, nor communism, nor atheism, nor any other anti-Christ influence, weaken our conviction that Jesus Christ is the God of this land nor diminish our determination to obey his laws. On such conviction and such obedience hang all our hopes so well expressed in Samuel F. Smith’s patriotic hymn:
Our fathers’ God to thee,
Author of liberty,
To thee we sing.
Long may our land be bright
With freedom’s holy light.
Protect us by thy might,
Great God, our King!
(Hymns, no. 115.)
That it may be so, I humbly pray."