Not much good news comes out of the Capitol, so when it does, we certainly want to recognize it to hopefully encourage more.
During the Tate Reeves/Billy Hewes race last year, the Senate Chaplain position was the subject of a minor political dust up. Rev. Ben James, the official but unpaid Senate Chaplain under then Lt. Governor Phil Bryant endorsed Tate Reeves for the number two job.
The Senate Chaplain position was then eliminated at the start of the 2012 session as prayers during morning roll call often rotate between ministers of constituent districts or are led by the members themselves.
Emily Pettus did an article about the dust up that ensued. One could have read the article to finger Tate Reeves as the bad guy.
Fast forward to now.
Reeves along with Rev. James have created the Capitol Prayer and Ministry Foundation. They have expanded its mission and ministry opportunities beyond simply the State Senate. Included on the Foundation’s advisory board are state elected officials (Lynn Fitch, Delbert Hosemann and Bill Waller), other legislative leaders (Speaker Philip Gunn, Joey Fillingane, Becky Currie and Jason White) and business leaders.
Weekly prayer luncheons will be scheduled in the 2013 session as well as small group ministries within each branch of state government. This non-profit will fund non-partisan, non-denominational efforts that focus on leadership through faith.
Here is a copy of the letter that has been sent out seeking support for funding:
Few would argue that Reeves’ style differs from his predecessor. Both Bryant and Reeves are indeed effective politically, just in different ways. How Reeves helped enact this Capitol Prayer and Ministry Foundation is a window into his political style, and though he won’t seek credit, he should get some on this one.