Missouri is not obligated to give a grant to a church for the purpose of refurbishing its religious preschool’s playground, Americans United for Separation of Church and State says.
In a friend-of-the-court brief in the case of Trinity Lutheran Church of Columbia, Inc. v. Pauley submitted today to the U.S. Supreme Court by Americans United and seven allied groups, the organizations explain that Missouri’s decision to offer grants only to secular organizations is not unconstitutional.
Thanks to the power of the Religious Right, a number of bad bills have circulated in the states this year that would allow discrimination against LGBT persons in the name of “religious freedom.”
Here are updates on the status of some of those measures.
A Missouri chapter of the Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. recently raised a record amount of money at its annual fundraiser, thanks in part to a backlash to critical comments from a prominent Catholic cleric.
In a February missive, Roman Catholic Archbishop Robert J. Carlson of St. Louis slammed the Girl Scouts for supposedly promoting ideas that are “incompatible” with Catholic doctrine.
Four years ago, officials at Trinity Lutheran Church in Columbia, Mo., decided they would like to resurface a playground at the church’s religious preschool – and that taxpayers should pick up the tab for it.
Under a state program, aid was available for such projects through a program that awarded grants to purchase recycled tires – but not for houses of worship. The church sued, and its attorneys at Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), a large Religious Right group, made a startling claim: The church has a constitutional right to taxpayer support.
Every now and then, far-right religious groups or their leaders decide to attack the Girl Scouts. I’m not sure why because it never works out for them. Despite this track record of failure, Roman Catholic Archbishop Robert J. Carlson of St. Louis decided to join the fray recently.
Carlson issued a letter asserting that the Girl Scouts “is exhibiting a troubling pattern of behavior and it is clear to me that as they move in the ways of the world it is becoming increasingly incompatible with our Catholic values.”
The parents of two Missouri soldiers killed during Operation Desert Storm are unhappy that a memorial to their sons that previously included a Christian symbol is scheduled to be moved from a county courthouse to a local cemetery.
A Missouri state representative who wants to stop his daughters from accessing birth control recently won a victory in his ongoing suit against the Affordable Care Act’s contraception regulations when the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed to hear arguments in his challenge to the regulations, thus reversing a lower court ruling that threw the case out on standing.
Missouri officials can’t be forced to give grant money to a church seeking public funds to refurbish a playground, a federal court ruled recently.