Our children’s school is being turned into a church. The school district, in order to raise money, decided to rent our elementary school to a church group. So, every Sunday the church will hold two services in the school. The church’s first service will be Sept 26th. Presently the contract is for two years. They already anticipate parking issues.
The church is a large evangelical church whose business model is to rent spaces all over our metropolitan area and broadcast their flagship church’s main sermon to each peripheral church. My children’s school is going to be a newly added satellite to their kingdom — it is already advertised on their website. The church, already making themselves at home, have revamped the school’s sound system. Apparently United States law presently holds that schools can rent out their facilities to religious organizations but they may not exclude some and allow others. Yet government facilities and resources may not be used to aid a group which is pervasively religious in mission.
Irrespective of the law–for we all know that not all laws are good–my wife, several townspeople and I are trying to fight it. The good news is that the borough who rents the land to the school has a contract saying the land may only be used for a school. So a cease and desist suit has been filled against the district but the contract can be appealed and the school is appealing to a zoning committee. So this looks like it will be a fight to see if we can get our community to see that keeping religion our of our schools, even on weekends, is a good thing.
Some atheist friends, who also have children in the school, said they didn’t care about the issue because it was good money. I pointed out to these friends that if this were a large atheist group or a Muslim group, the town would immediately organize against the school being used by them. My friends agreed and are hopefully re-thinking their positions.
What do you think? I will be using your thoughts to help me organize my plan. Bring them on!