Laus Deo

George Washington’s prayer for America


In Washington , D.C. there can never be a building of greater height than the Washington Monument. On the aluminum cap, atop the Washington Monument in Washington, D.C., are displayed two words: Laus Deo.


No one can see these words. In fact, most visitors to the monument are totally unaware they are even there and for that matter, probably couldn’t care less.

These words have been there for many years: they are 555 feet, 5.125 inches high, perched atop the monument, facing skyward to the Father of the United States of America, overlooking the 69 square miles which comprise the District of Columbia, capital of the U.S.A.

“Laus Deo” - two seemingly insignificant, unnoticed words. Out of sight and, one might think, out of mind, but very meaningfully placed at the highest point over what is the most powerful city in the most successful nation in the world.

Those two words, in Latin, composed of just four syllables and only seven letters, mean, “Praise be to God!”

Though construction of this giant obelisk began in 1848, when James Polk was President of the United States, it was not until 1888 that the monument was inaugurated and opened to the public. It took twenty-five years to finally cap the memorial.

From atop this magnificent granite and marble structure, visitors take in the beautiful panoramic view of the city with its division into four major segments. From that vantage point, one can also see the original plan of the designer, Pierre Charles l’Enfant. A perfect cross imposed upon the landscape, with the White House to the north. The Jefferson Memorial is to the south, the Capitol to the east and the Lincoln Memorial to the west.

Why a cross? What about separation of church and state? Yes, a cross - separation of church and state was not, is not, in the Constitution.

Within the monument itself are 898 steps and 50 landings. As one climbs the steps and pauses at the landings the memorial stones share a message:
On the 12th Landing is a prayer offered by the City of Baltimore;
On the 20th is a memorial presented by some Chinese Christians;
On the 24th a presentation made by Sunday School children from New York and Philadelphia quoting Proverbs 10:7, Luke 18:16 and Proverbs 22:6. Praise be to God!

When the cornerstone of the Washington Monument was laid on July 4th, 1848, deposited within it were many items including the Holy Bible presented by the Bible Society. Praise be to God! Such was the discipline, the moral direction, and the spiritual mood given by the founder and first President of a unique democracy: “One Nation, Under God.”

Here is Washington’s prayer for America:

“Almighty God; We make our earnest prayer that Thou wilt keep the United States in Thy holy protection; that Thou wilt incline the hearts of the citizens to cultivate a spirit of subordination and obedience to government; and entertain a brotherly affection and love for one another and for their fellow citizens of the United States at large. And finally that Thou wilt most graciously be pleased to dispose us all to do justice, to love mercy, and to demean ourselves with that charity, humility, and pacific temper of mind which were the characteristics of the Divine Author of our blessed religion, and without a humble imitation of whose e example in these things we can never hope to be a happy nation. Grant our supplication, we beseech Thee, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”

You may forget the width and height of “Laus Deo”, its location, or the architects - but no one who reads this will forget its meaning, or the words: “Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain.” (Psalm 127:1)

Laus Deo!


QuotaBills
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There is no gambling like politics. - Benjamin Disraeli

Politics have no relation to morals. - Niccolo Machiavelli

Tis brief, my lord... as woman's love. - William Shakespeare

Political correctness is tyranny with manners. - Charlton Heston

All government, of course, is against liberty. - H L Mencken

I never saw anything funnier than Texas politics. - Molly Ivins

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Most bad government results from too much government. - Thomas Jefferson

Nothing is so admirable in politics as a short memory. - John Kenneth Galbraith

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Every decent man is ashamed of the government he lives under. - H L Mencken

Democracy becomes a government of bullies tempered by editors. - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Diplomacy is to do and say the nastiest thing in the nicest way. - Isaac Goldberg

World War II was the last government program that really worked. - George Will

The sad duty of politics is to establish justice in a sinful world. - Reinhold Niebuhr

God created Adam lord of all living creatures, but Eve spoiled it all. - Martin Luther

In politics, madame, you need two things: friends, but above all an enemy. - Brian Mulroney

Government can't give us anything without depriving us of something else. - Henry Hazlitt

Politics has become so expensive that it takes a lot of money even to be defeated. - Will Rogers

Idealism is the noble toga that political gentlemen drape over their will to power. - Aldous Huxley

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My wife hasn't had a birthday in 4 years. She was born in the year of our Lord-only-knows. - Unknown

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I know now, Lord, why you utter no answer. You are yourself the answer. Before your face questions die away. What other answer would suffice? - C S Lewis

When I am abroad, I always make it a rule never to criticize or attack the government of my country. I make up for lost time when I am at home. - Winston Churchill

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In politics, as in womanizing, failure is decisive. It sheds its retrospective gloom on earlier endeavor which at the time seemed full of promise. - Malcolm Muggeridge


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18-Jan-2022