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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Diplomacy: Lying in state. - Oliver Herford

Politics is an inexact science. - Otto von Bismarck

Politics makes strange red-fellows. - Will Rogers

Politics have no relation to morals. - Niccolo Machiavelli

The gun is not out of Irish politics. - Ian Paisley

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The secret of politics? Make a good treaty with Russia. - Otto von Bismarck

There can be no wise politics without thought beforehand. - Annie Besant

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The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me? - Bible

Show me the right path, O Lord; point out the road for me to follow. - Bible

Ultimatum: In diplomacy, a last demand before resorting to concessions - Daffynitions joe-ks.com

To say nothing, especially when speaking, is half the art of diplomacy. - Will Durant

I thank the Lord for the great principle of repentance and forgiveness. - Gordon B Hinckley

The secret of political bargaining is to look more strong than what you really are. - Subhash Bose

The Lord hath created medicines out of the earth; and he that is wise will not abhor them. - The Bible

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A diplomat is a man who always remembers a woman's birthday but never remembers her age. - Robert Frost

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A diplomat is someone who can tell you to go to hell in such a way that you will look forward to the trip. - Caskie Stinnett

When government accepts responsibility for people, then people no longer take responsibility for themselves. - George Pataki

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The hardest thing about any political campaign is how to win without proving that you are unworthy of winning. - Theodor Adorno

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“But it doesn't take a thousand men to open a door, my lord."
"It might to keep it open.” - Ursula K. Le Guin

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Our future cannot depend on the government alone. The ultimate solutions lie in the attitudes and the actions of the American people. - Joe Biden

Politics is the gentle art of getting votes from the poor and campaign funds from the rich, by promising to protect each from the other. - Oscar Ameringer

Politicians also have no leisure, because they are always aiming at something beyond political life itself, power and glory, or happiness. - Aristotle

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I once said to my father, when I was a boy, 'Dad we need a third political party.' He said to me, 'I'll settle for a second.' - Ralph Nader

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17-Jan-2021