By: Jack Hewartson
little history lesson you may enjoy about the Washington Monument ...
One detail that is rarely
mentioned in Washington, DC is that there can never be a building of
the Washington Monument.
With all the uproar in the United States about removing the 10
commandments from public places and just about everything else
associated with the Holy Bible and Christianity ... this is
worth a moment or two of your time.
On the aluminum cap atop the Washington Monument in Washington, DC, are
displayed two words: Laus Deo. No one can see these words. In
visitors to the monument are totally unaware they are even there, and
matter, probably couldn't care less.
Once you know Laus Deo's history, you will want to share this
know. But these words have been there for many years; they are 555
feet, 5.125 inches high, perched atop the monument, facing skyward to
Father of our nation, overlooking the 69 square miles which comprise the
District of Columbia, capital of the United States of America.
Laus Deo! Two seemingly insignificant, un-noticed words. Out of
one might think, out of mind, but very meaningfully placed at the
highest point over what is the most powerful city in the most successful
nation in the world.
So, what do those two words, in Latin, composed of just four syllables
seven letters, possibly mean? Very simply, they say
Though construction of this giant obelisk began in 1848, when James Polk
President of the United States, it was not until 1888 that the monument
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,
Deo ... "Praise be to God!"
From atop this magnificent granite and marble structure, visitors may
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
imposed upon the landscape, with the White House to the north. The
Jefferson Memorial is to the south, the Capitol to the east and the
Memorial to the west.
cross you ask? Why a cross? What about separation of church and state?
a cross; separation of church and state was not, is not, in the
Constitution. So, read on. How interesting and, no doubt, intended to
carry a profound meaning for those who bother to notice.
Praise be to God! Within the monument itself are 898 steps and 50
landings. As one climbs the steps and pauses at the landings the
stones share a message. On the 12th Landing is a prayer offered by the
of Baltimore; on the 20th is a memorial presented by some Chinese
Christians; on the 24th a presentation made by Sunday School children
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,
deposited within it were many items including the Holy Bible presented
Bible Society. Praise be to God! Such was the discipline, the moral
direction, and the spiritual mood given by the founder and first
our unique democracy .."One Nation, Under God."
I am awed by Washington's prayer for America. Have you never read it?
Well, now is your unique opportunity, so read on!
"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
for their fellow citizens of the United States at large. And finally
Thou wilt most graciously be pleased to dispose us all to do justice,
love mercy, and to demean ourselves with that charity, humility, and
pacific temper of mind which were the characteristics of the Divine
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."
one stops to observe the inscriptions found in public places all over
nation's capitol, he or she will easily find the signature of God, as
is unmistakably inscribed everywhere you look.
may forget the width and height of "Laus Deo," its location, or
architects, but no one who reads this will be able to forget its
these words: "Unless the Lord builds the house its builders labor in
vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard
It is hoped you will send this to every child you know; to every sister,
brother, father, mother or friend. They will not find offense, because
given them a lesson in history that they probably never learned in