Jan. 11, 2018
Tee Rogers, the humanist chaplain at the University of Central Florida, delivered an invocation prior to the start of the Florida State House, the first atheist to give a secular invocation in front of that body. Rogers writes, “A note of gratitude to Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith for intentionally inviting an atheist invocation, and to the Central Florida Freethought Community for their support.”
Here is the invocation:
It is an honor to represent your humanist, atheist and other non-religious constituents and colleagues with a secular invocation.
Those you serve, and those around us today, include people of different cultures and races, gender identities, levels of financial stability and backgrounds. They vary in physical and cognitive abilities. They speak many languages. They include people of many faiths and non-faith perspectives.
The deliberations in this chamber are of the highest consequence to the people of Florida. As you work together toward solutions that address challenges facing our state, may you have the fortitude to make difficult choices while holding the needs of the diverse public at the forefront of your decisions.
While we are diverse, we are united by our common humanity.
As we seek to honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. this month, I am reminded of his words: “The time is always right to do what is right.”
May your leadership be guided by integrity and compassion to uplift all people today and every day of this legislative session.
Thank you for your service and your work today to make a positive, meaningful difference for all.