Photo Credit: Christ Fit Gym/Facebook
SHREVEPORT, La. — A school board in Louisiana has unanimously voted to fight a lawsuit filed by Americans United for Separation of Church and State after it initially instructed the field crew to spray paint over a paid advertisement on the Benton High School football field that includes a Scripture citation and a cross.
Americans United had filed suit against the Bossier Parish School District earlier this year, asserting that “school officials throughout the Bossier Parish School System coerce students into religious practices and subject them to unwelcome religious messages and indoctrination.”
It said that prayers are delivered during school-sponsored events, that those events are sometimes held in churches, and that teachers and others encourage Christianity in the classroom.
Most recently, local faith-based fitness center Christ Gym purchased an advertisement in the end zone, paying the booster club $3,500 to advertise his business for the 2018-2019 season.
However, as the logo features the name “Christ Gym,” as well as a cross and a citation of 1 Timothy 4:8, Americans United took the matter to court. An attorney for the school board advised that the ad should be blotted out for the time being.
“The school board’s legal counsel advised the administration that the logo should be removed pending consultation with the court, as alleged violations had just been discussed with the court,” explained attorney Jon Guice in a statement, according to KTBS-TV.
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