Governor Gary Locke’s Remarks
Governor’s Prayer Breakfast—Welcoming Remarks
February 27, 2004

Good morning, and welcome.

We gather today to honor a simple tradition here in Olympia—the laying aside of differences to pray and break bread together. We gather in the spirit of inclusiveness, fellowship and prayer.

The first Governor’s Prayer Breakfast was held 63 years ago here in Olympia, initiated by Governor Arthur B. Langlie. In a world already torn by war and a country threatened by it, our predecessors in 1941 came together to pray and honor the virtues of love and faith.

The tradition they started on that cold winter morning six decades ago was inspiring—inspiring enough to become the model for the National Prayer Breakfast.

Today we meet under similar circumstances. We live in a dangerous world. The nations of that world continue to weigh agonizing questions of good and evil, with human lives hanging precariously in the balance.

Families in our state and across our nation are struggling, and are uncertain about the future. Now, as then, we gather to transcend parties and politics to pray together for a more loving, more forgiving world.

Like all times, this is an appropriate time to pray.

It is an appropriate time to pray for wisdom and guidance. Let us pray for careful, sober judgment. Let us pray that our leaders will make the best decisions. Let us pray that the teachings of the Old and New Testament to love one another are not lost in the grim realities with which we struggle. Let us pray for more tolerance, understanding, and against stereotyping and bigotry.

Let us pray that we continue to open our hearts to one another, and help each other. And that we will find the way to better days ahead.

As we gather and pray together today, let us also remember who we are. Just as this morning we transcend our daily business and political differences to reflect on more important things, let’s remember that we are, above all else, fathers and mothers, sons and daughters, sisters and brothers, and friends and respected colleagues.

Thank you.

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