Published On: Wed, Aug 13th, 2014

Georgia high school football team warned of lawsuit if they don’t stop praying, using scriptures

A high school football team is under fire from the American Humanist Association’s Appignani Humanist Legal Center who say that prayer and Bible scriptures reportedly being shared with players and included on official team stationary violate the separation of church and state.

Chestatee High School, a public school in Gainesville, Georgia, were targeted after the group learned of the activities.

Georgia football team warned of lawsuit if they don't stop prayers and scripture references photo/ American Humanist Association

Georgia football team warned of lawsuit if they don’t stop prayers and scripture references photo/ American Humanist Association

“We have been informed that the school’s football coaches have been using their position to promote Christianity on the football team by integrating Bible verses into functional team documents and team promotions in various ways,” read a letter sent to officials at Hall County School District. “Meanwhile, they have been either leading the team in prayer or participating in team prayers on a regular basis.”

According to the Appignani Humanist Legal Center, the participation in these activities by public school football coaches amounts to a violation of the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.

Photos attached to the complaint letter seemingly shed light on some of the group’s First Amendment grievances. In one picture, football players are in a circle holding hands and engaging in what appears to be prayer while a separate photo shows a team workout sheet which references Galatians 6:9.

The group’s letter asked that football coaches cease the “unconstitutional activity” immediately, noting that a lawsuit could be filed against the district for violating the Establishment Clause.

Superintendent Will Schofield also spoke out, telling the Times that personnel should not be leading prayer, but that students’ right to invoke God should and will be protected.

“Certainly adults shouldn’t be leading children in prayers to any particular religion, but one thing we will stand behind is our students’ right to prayer,” he said.

Monica Miller, an attorney with the group, said she expects the district to comply with the atheist legal firm’s demands.

“I think it would be very unusual in this circumstance for them to refuse to comply,” Miller told the Gainesville Times.

Check out more photos over at the Blaze HERE





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- Roxanne "Butter" Bracco began with the Dispatch as Pittsburgh Correspondent, but will be providing reports and insights from Washington DC, Maryland and the surrounding region. Contact Roxie aka "Butter" at [email protected] ATTN: Roxie or Butter Bracco


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