A self-described Christian parent has turned to the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF), an odd ally considering her stated faith view and the group’s track record, to wage a complaint against a public school that recently hosted a pre-school graduation ceremony — an event that purportedly included an overtly-Christian prayer.
The parent, Amber Barnhill, claims that an “illegal” invocation was offered by a teacher at Amelia Elementary School in the Beaumont Independent School District in Texas.
The FFRF has apparently sent a letter to the school alleging that the teacher opened the ceremony with the prayer and prompted the students to say, “In Jesus’ name, amen.”
The event, according to Barnhill and a report by KBMT-TV, took place on May 31. The mother was apparently in the room at the time and voiced her angst surrounding the invocation with the teacher in question. While, as a Christian, she claims she wasn’t offended, the educator’s response is what upset her.
“She said it was legal, freedom of speech. Not religion but her way of life,” the woman explained. “She said she could not allow herself to apologize.”
The teacher admitted to the outlet that the parent was, indeed, upset and said that she will no longer offer graduation prayers. The district is currently investigating.
Considering the parent’s faith allegiance, her reliance upon an atheist group that has been controversial (and viewed by some critics as “anti-Christian”) since its inception is fascinating. But, perhaps she truly believes in separatism and found the FFRF to be the best organization to help meet that objective.
So far, the district has reportedly not yet responded to the complaint.
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