A Christian rally is set to descend upon Parliament today for the first sitting of the year in an attempt to urge Speaker Trevor Mallard to reinstate Jesus into the opening prayer.
Jesus for New Zealand spokesperson Pastor Ross Smith said in a statement the "movement" was bringing Christian people together to "make a stand".
The New Zealand parliamentary prayer was changed last year to no longer include a reference to Jesus, and unsurprisingly, the move divided public opinion.
In a Facebook poll by TVNZ1's Breakfast, 1,751 people supported the move and 2,121 people were against the removal. Interestingly, the same poll on the 1 NEWS Facebook page saw 1,184 people in support, and 990 people against.
Speaker Trevor Mallard was said to have fast-tracked the consultation process to remove Jesus by just not including him in the parliamentary prayer.
"We feel that the church does not have a voice in this change," Pastor Smith said, "This rally may be the only way to keep Jesus in the prayer."
Pastor Merita Lau Young of Hosanna World Outreach Centre said they would be telling Parliament "Jesus is alive and well in our life".
"We need to walk to the talk."
The rally is set for 12pm today.
Original Article on tvnz.co.nz.