Merrill Thomas: “I prepare the studies based on topics the legislators want to talk about and Senator Metts invites Public Servants to attend. Right now we are working on foundational material, we don’t want to delve too deeply too fast because we are not certain where everyone stands in his faith.”
Senator Metts: “Yes, as Merrill was saying, we don’t know where people are. We heard Pastor Shawn Thornton speak about not jumping too quickly into the application of Scripture before you’ve done the foundational work.
“We have members who are coming from a variety of places, some colleagues want to know more about the Bible, others do want to jump quickly into application, another is a retired navy chaplain, right now we are being careful to craft something that meets all their needs and we are starting with the basics of the Gospel.”
Merrill Thomas: “And you may remember the study we talked about last year that showed Rhode Island being one of the least churched cities in the United States.”
In a report on an American Bible Society study, Time Magazine called Providence, Rhode Island one of the “Most Godless Cities in America.” The report ranked Rhode Island’s capital city last in ‘Bible-mindedness,’ which is defined as reading the Bible and believing in its inerrancy.
Rhode Island ranked 44 out of 50 states in regular church attendance, and in a separate study, with Providence running nearly dead-last in church attendance, coming in 98 out of 100 cities.
Because we are one of the least churched states, people may just not know and the basics could be news to them, so Sen. Metts and I are happy to begin by sharing the simple truth of the Bible.”
In speaking about the study last year, Senator Metts said: “Providence was named after God’s providence, yet it is one of the lowest Bible reading cities in nation. I am ready to go! Hopefully, prayerfully, God will bless this Bible study, even if there i s only a handful of us. I have four to six and we will see what happens. There were 12 disciples and they changed the whole world.”