Bremerton coach who prayed after games placed on leave

29 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

BREAKING: High school boots praying football coach.

SEATTLE (AP) — The coach of a Washington state high school football team known for praying before and after games has been placed on paid administrative leave by the school district. Officials say the leave was necessitated because of Kennedy’s refusal to comply with district directives that he refrain from engaging in overt, public religious displays on the football field while on duty as a coach. Bremerton High School officials have warned coach Joe Kennedy not to pray at the 50-yard line anymore, where his players voluntarily joined in, but he has carried on without consequence.

Kennedy, who is a devout Christian, had been under investigation since September after someone complained about his post-game prayers at the 50-yard-line. Kennedy initially agreed to the ban, but with subsequent support from religious-freedom organization Texas-based Liberty Institute, he resumed the postgame prayers. Starr and her fellow Satanists do not plan on being silent, with the organization telling The Friendly Atheist blog, “We’re going to be in black robes, heads covered like Sith Lords. Leavell had offered to let the coach engage in “private prayer” following the football games — provided no child could see the coach petitioning the Almighty.

The district’s accommodation for the coach’s “hush-hush, clandestine” prayers would be allowed “so long as your brief, private religious exercise would not interfere with your performance of your continuing duties as an assistant coach.” “We tried to meet with the school officials in-person but they refused to meet,” the attorney told me. “We were only able to have a brief hour and a half call with their lawyer, and the result was a letter banning private prayer just a few hours before last Friday’s game.” It is also unfortunate that the Bremerton School District and Superintendent Aaron Level have shown such animosity towards a good and honorable Christian man like Joe Kennedy. His latest book is “God Less America: Real Stories From the Front Lines of the Attack on Traditional Values.” Follow Todd on Twitter@ToddStarnes and find him on Facebook.

James Lankford (R-Oklahoma) led the effort in signing the letter. “The Establishment Clause exists to ensure that the government cannot affirmatively impose or elevate one religion over another,” it reads. “However, it does not prohibit the government from referencing religion altogether, nor does it require that government officials proactively scrub all references of religion from the public square.”

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