A nonprofit legal organization is providing legal services for the New Hampshire mom who was told that she could no longer pray for her children on school property.
Lizarda Urena began praying aloud on the steps of Concord High School after bullets were found in a school restroom. But when the Freedom from Religion Foundation complained, school officials put a stop to the prayers, effective the start of this school year.
Matt Sharp, legal counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom, is defending Urena's constitutional rights.
“We sent a letter on her behalf to the school explaining to them that contrary to what Freedom from Religion Foundation had said, this is not a violation of the Establishment Clause,” the attorney tells OneNewsNow. “The school can allow her to come on campus and pray and has no need to be concerned about getting sued for it.”
Sharp says it's not just this situation he’s worried about; he is also concerned about other prayer events at schools across the country – such as the annual “See You at the Pole” gatherings on public school campuses every fall. (This year’s SYATP event is slated for Wednesday, September 25)
“[At such events], community members, parents, and students gather around the flag pole on school property to pray for the students and the school and the faculty and staff,” he explains.
“And so if this school is not willing to defend that, then the concern is that other schools may likewise try and kick off [campus] parents and students and others wanting to participate in events like that.”
The ADF attorney says that if the Freedom from Religion Foundation does elect to sue over this matter, his firm would be happy to defend the school.