Pastor Riley’s Invocation at the Lincoln Day Dinner

Posted on 02-20-2022

Lincoln Day Dinner Invocation,

February 12, 2022, delivered by the Rev. Dr. John R. Riley

Almighty God, tonight we gather to remember and honor our first Republican President Abraham Lincoln born this day in 1809. We give thanks for the man who saved the Union and ended the curse of slavery. We celebrate Lincoln’s humility and determination that saw this nation reunited and re-dedicated to the principles that all men and women are created equal and endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We remember also that “Father Abraham” was not universally beloved, but was hated by many of the same elements of the media and the elites who hate us still today for being Republicans and dedicating ourselves to the cause of individual freedom, low taxation, a strong military, the rule and enforcement of law against the criminal lawbreaker, free enterprise, private ownership, the right to bear arms, and the freedom of religion. And last of all we are hated because we love our flag and stand for it and kneel only for you.

O Lord, tonight even while we are filled with optimism for the coming elections because we will have a strong Republican slate with the political winds at our back, we have a sense of sadness and dismay for the condition of our country. Our economy has gone from one of robust recovery leading and energizing the world under President Donald Trump to one of economic collapse and the return of high inflation, empty shelves, rib eye steak if you can find it at $17 a pound, rampant COVID still despite Utopian promises, and the specter of war and instability overseas. Tonight we want to pray especially for the people of the Ukraine and Taiwan and pray for their protection from invasion. And, Lord, those gas prices with Brandon’s funny face stickers on the pump keep roaring to new highs and little red lying hood has become the new high priestess of science which she so solemnly believes in and science is whatever Dr. Fauci says it is even when he is wrong. Well, at least if the science is defective, we can’t blame You, Lord. Last year our law enforcement officers died in the line of duty at a rate 55% higher than 2020. Our southern border is a welcome station for killer drugs and death from opiates is killing more Americans than COVID. And Brandon calls all this misery temporary and offers up $30 million to buy crack cocaine pipes perhaps hoping we’ll all get high and forget about our misery or maybe turn to art for therapoy like Hunter. If Brandon was a competitor in the winter Olympics he would get the gold medal in the bobsled race because he has taken our country downhill faster in one year than the forty five previous Presidents. And we want to pray for our Olympians who have had to endure not only the hardships of competing in a genocidal Communist country, but enduring the busted ratings and left wing apologist coverage of NBC. Lord, in the face of all the grim outlook, we can only turn to You, and pray that You will save our country before it is destroyed. Please, Lord, do not forsake us, but turn us back from the brink before it is too late.

As we celebrate Black History month we also want to remember the contributions and achievements of Black Republicans who have done so much, often unsung and unheralded, to advance the cause of freedom, justice, equality before the law, and the protection of human life. We remember Republicans from Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglass to Alveda King, Senator Tim Scott, Candace Owens, Larry Elder, Walter Williams, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, Thomas Sowell, Ben Carson, Shelby Steele and multitudes of others some of whom serve our party proudly here in Kent County and in Delaware like Dover City Councilman David Anderson, Smyrna Mayor Robert Johnson, and Kent County Chairman Jason Stewart. Bless them all. May they all be remembered and honored tonight.

We ask for your blessing on our food and those who have prepared it tonight, and please, Lord, like we ask year after year remember who we are not as Republicans: we are not the party of slavery, we are not the party of the trail of tears, we are not the party of disunion, we are not the party of Jim Crow and segregation, we are not the party that founded the Ku Klux Klan, we are not the party that interned Japanese citizens, we are not the party that booed You at their national convention or that kneels for the National Anthem or burns our flag and burns our cities, or that calls for late term abortions up to and after birth, and we are not the party of socialism, and we are not the party of fake news, fake elections, fake presidents with fake hairlines, fake smiles, and fake memories. And we are not the party of a fake Delaware Attorney General who can not find the time to prosecute crime. We are the party that needs Your Help, Lord, in the struggle against tyranny and evil, and so we praise You tonight and ask for your blessing on our honored guests and speakers, our Republicans in Congress, our Delaware Legislators, office holders and candidates at all levels, our State Chair Jane Brady, our Kent County Vice Chair Cheryl Precourt, our Kent County Republican Women’s Club President Gerlinde Lancelotti, and on our wonderful Delaware and Kent County Leadership teams, who worked to put this dinner on for us, and so many others, and please bless and protect also the men and women of our Law Enforcement and our Armed Forces on guard for us tonight and especially those deploying to the Ukraine. We also want to pray for our friend and great philanthropist and humanitarian Lynn Chick who is recovering from a stroke at Kent General Hospital.