[Ed. – It isn’t clear if this happened before the mosque attack last week or not. It may be that Christians in New Zealand have only just learned of it. They aren’t taking it lying down, at any rate, but it’s a good question whether they can get this reversed.]
Protesters have descended on New Zealand’s parliament this week to demand the speaker reinstate references to Jesus Christ in the parliamentary prayer.
Since taking over the role in November last year, Labour’s Trevor Mallard has dropped any reference to Jesus in the prayer which opens the start of every session.
Mallard said he wanted to make the prayer more inclusive for all parliamentarians and the tweak was a “compromise”.
A reference to “almighty god” remains, but it is not a specific reference to a Christian god.
On Tuesday around 1,000 people protested on the steps of parliament house in Wellington, arguing that New Zealand was a Christian nation and Mallard had no authority to axe Jesus’s name.