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Prayer of the Guest Chaplain of the U.S. House of Representatives: Rabbi Dr. Stanley M. Wagner on 2 April 1984

https://opensiddur.org/?p=55158 Prayer of the Guest Chaplain of the U.S. House of Representatives: Rabbi Dr. Stanley M. Wagner on 2 April 1984 2024-03-30 19:01:02 The Opening Prayer given in the U.S. House of Representatives on 2 April 1984. Text the Open Siddur Project Aharon N. Varady (transcription) Aharon N. Varady (transcription) Stanley M. Wagner United States Congressional Record https://opensiddur.org/copyright-policy/ Aharon N. Varady (transcription) https://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/ Opening Prayers for Legislative Bodies United States of America Prayers of Guest Chaplains 98th Congress 20th century C.E. תחינות teḥinot 58th century A.M. English vernacular prayer U.S. House of Representatives
Guest Chaplain: Rabbi Dr. Stanley M. Wagner, Beth ha-Medrosh Hagodol Congregation, Denver, Colorado
Sponsor: Rep. Pat Schroeder (D-CO)
Date of Prayer: 2 April 1984

Mrs. SCHROEDER. Mr. Speaker, Dr. Stanley M. Wagner is rabbi of the Beth ha-Medrosh Hagodol (B.M.H.) congregation in Denver, Colorado, and professor of Judaic studies and director of the Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Denver. He also serves as chaplain of the Colorado State Senate, the first and only rabbi ever appointed to that position, and as director of Colorado’s Mizel Museum of Judaica.

Rabbi Wagner is a religious leader of national renown who came to Denver in September 1972, after serving for two years as national executive vice president of the Religious Zionists of America, a role which catapulted him to key positions on the national and international Jewish scene, in such organizations as the American Zionist Organization, Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations, and the American Conference for Soviet Jewry. In 1979, Rabbi Wagner was awarded “Life Tenure” by his congregation “in recognition of his significant contributions to Jewish life and to the community.”

Ordained at the Yeshiva University’s Rabbinical Seminary, Rabbi Wagner holds five other degrees of higher learning from this institution, including a doctorate in Jewish history. He served as an instructor for 4 years in the Department of Ancient Languages and Literatures at the University of Kentucky while holding a pulpit in Lexington, and was appointed instructor in history at Hofstra University in New York serving as rabbi of the Baldwin Jewish Center in Long Island. He has delivered a number of scholarly papers at conferences of the American Association of Professors of Hebrew, the Society of Biblical Literature and Exegesis, the National Foreign Language Conference, and the Congress on Science and Ethics, and he has spoken as guest lecturer and “Scholar In Residence” in communities from coast to coast.

Dr. Wagner has been cited by the Bonds of Israel, United Jewish Appeal, Federation of Jewish Philanthropies, Jewish National Fund, ORT, and Yeshiva University, and he was the recipient of the Shofar Award from the Boy Scouts of America. He is listed in Who’s Who in World Jewry (1972), Who’s Who in Religion (1977), and Who’s Who in American Jewry (1980). He served as president of the Long Island Commission of Orthodox Rabbis and the Nassau-Suffolk Association of Rabbis, vice president of the Rabbinic Alumni of Yeshiva University, chairman of the Rabbinic Advisory Council of the Jewish National Fund, panelist in the American Arbitration Association, director of the Judaic Program at Camp B’nai B’rith, resident scholar for seven summers at B’nai B’rith Youth’s International Leadership Trainee program, and he currently serves as a member of the National Adult Jewish Education Commission of B’nai B’rith.

Rabbi Wagner is one of the few clergymen in America to have delivered invocations both at the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. Dr. Wagner has written scholarly and popular articles in publications such as Congress Bi-Weekly, in Jewish Bookland, National Jewish Monthly, the Synagogue Light, and has had many of his sermons selected as the “year’s best” and published by the Rabbinical Council of America. He has edited or written four significant volumes entitled Great Confrontations in Jewish History, Traditions of the American Jew, and Great Schisms in Jewish History, published by the University of Denver, and A Piece of My Mind, published by KTAV. President Jimmy Carter invited the rabbi to the White House in March 1978, to present Traditions of the American Jew to him, personally. Dr. Wagner is also general editor of a three-volume series on Christian and Jewish Traditions in the 20th Century to be published by Abingdon Press. The first volume, entitled Scripture—Its Authority, Interpretation, and Relevance appeared in September 1982. Rabbi Wagner has traveled extensively and has been to Israel 12 times or Government study grants and as leader of pilgrimages. In 1976, Dr. Wagner was sent on a mission to Russia where he met with the leaders of the Jewish communities in Moscow, Kiev, and Leningrad.


Contribute a translationSource (English)
Our God and God of our Fathers:
With grateful hearts
for the privilege
of meeting together
as free men
in a free land,
do we invoke Thy blessings
upon this gathering
of the distinguished leaders
of our country.
Heavenly Father,
shed Thy light of wisdom and understanding
upon their deliberations.
Bless them with good health,
discernment, and vision,
thereby enabling them to cope successfully
with the manifold problems
with which they are confronted.
Bless Thou
our glorious land of liberty
and our citizens everywhere.
May the United States of America
under God
remain a citadel of freedom
and a watchtower
from which rays of light and hope
shall be beamed to those
who are now living
in darkness and despair.
Hasten the day
when the millennial hope of universal peace
will prevail throughout the world
with justice and freedom
for all people.

This prayer of the guest chaplain was offered in the third month of the second session of the 98th US Congress in the House of Representatives, and published in the Congressional Record, vol. 130, part 6 (1984), page 7279.


Congressional Record, vol. 130, part 6 (2 April 1984), p. 7279

Congressional Record, vol. 130, part 6 (2 April 1984), p. 7280




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