What A Message
WHAT A MESSAGE!
The aluminum cap, atop the Washington Monument in Washington DC displays two words: Laus Deo. (Lah-us Dee-o). No one can see these words. In fact, most visitors to the Monument are totally unaware of their placement. For that matter, many probably could care less.
555 feet, 5.125 inches high, perched atop the monument, facing skyward to the Father of our Nation, overlooking the 69 square miles which comprise the District of Columbia, Capitol of the United Sates of America, Laus Deo may seem two insignificant, and certainly un-noticed words. However, they were quite meaningfully placed at the highest point, overlooking what is the most powerful city in the most successful nation on the world.
So, what do those two Latin words, comprised of just four syllables and only seven letters, stand for? Very simply, they say “Praise be to God!”( Laus is Praise be and Deo means God).
Construction on this giant obelisk began in 1848, when James Polk was President of the United States. It was not until 1888 that the Monument was inaugurated and opened to the public. It took twenty-five years to finally cap the memorial with a tribute to the Father of our nation, “Laus Deo..Praise be to God!” From atop this magnificent granite and marble structure, visitors may take in the beautiful panoramic view of the city with its division into four major segments.
From that vantage point, one can also easily see the original plan of the designer, Pierre Charles l’Enfant….a perfect cross imposed upon the landscape, with the White House to the north, the Jefferson Memorial to the south, the Capitol to the east and the Lincoln Memorial to the west.
A cross you ask? Why a cross? What about separation of church and state? Yes, a cross! Separation of church and state was not, is not in the Constitution! There is a profound meaning in what was just stated here; for those who take the time to notice its importance. Praise be to God!
Within the monument itself are 898 steps and 50 landings. As one climbs the steps and pauses at each landing, to read the messages on the memorial stones. On the 12th landing is a prayer offered by the City of Baltimore; on the 20th is a memorial presented by some Chinese Christians; on the 24th, a presentation made by Sunday School children from New York and Philadelphia quoting Proverbs 10:7, Luke 18:16 and Proverbs 22:6. Praise be to God!
When the cornerstone of the Washington Monument was laid on July 4th, 1848, deposited within it were many items, including the Holy Bible, presented by the Bible Society. Praise be to God! Such was the discipline, the moral direction, the spiritual mood given by the founder and first President of our unique democracy.
“One Nation, Under God.”
Anyone should be awed by Washington’s Prayer for America.
“Almighty God; We make our earnest prayer that Thou wilt keep the United States in Thy Holy protection; that Thou wilt incline the hearts of the citizens to cultivate a spirit of subordination and obedience to government; and entertain a brotherly affection and love for one another and for their fellow citizens of the United States at large. And finally that Thou wilt most graciously be pleased to dispose us all to do justice, to love mercy, and to demean ourselves with that charity, humility, and temper of mind which were the characteristics of the Divine Author of our blessed religion; and without a humble imitation of whose example in these things we can never hope to be a happy nation. Grant our supplication, we beseech Thee, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”
Laus Deo! As you have probably guessed, more than 92 percent of Americans like the idea that our Pledge of Allegiance includes the phrase “under God”. It is clear when one studies the history of our great nation that Washington’s America was one of the few countries in all the world established under the guidance, direction and banner of Almighty God, to whom was given all praise, honor and worship by the great men who formed and fashioned her pivotal foundations.
When one pauses to observe the inscriptions found in public places all over our nation’s capitol, the signature of God can be unmistakably found inscribed everywhere you look! Though many attempt to disprove and reason it away, their arguments are weak and easily proven without basis. God assures us that their efforts will forever be in vain. More and more, people are coming together, affirming that this nation was, from the beginning, built on a fundamental Godly foundation.
Any nation not so constructed shall fail. Many nations before us have fallen into an abyss for their lack of adherence to principles based on the one true God. America has prospered. We should not allow doubt to filter into our midst, instilled by those who would profit from our faltering. We have always been:
One Nation Under God! Laus Deo! Praise be to God!
You may forget the width and height of “Laus Deo”, its location, or the architect, but no one who reads this will be able to forget its meaning, nor these words:
“Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain.”(Psalm127:1)
In reading this overture, you should not find offense, because you have been given a history lesson which may never have been taught in school. With that, be not ashamed, nor afraid, but have pity on those who will never see.
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