After Alaska City Assembly Creates Controversy with Invocation Policy, They Vote 5-2 Against Government Prayers

Earlier this month, the Ketchikan Gateway Borough Assembly in Alaska decided to approve an ordinance allowing invocation prayers at their meetings (though it still needed to survive a final vote). While that’s happened all over the country, what made this ordinance stand out was that the prayers would be coordinated by the Ketchikan Ministerial Association (a Christian group) and they would be asked to reach out to local clergy, shutting out most non-Christian groups and almost certainly excluding non-religious ones.

Assembly member Glen Thompson (below) said most of those other groups would be welcome. Most.

I don’t have a problem with having an inclusive denominations, be they Hindu, Islam, Bahai faith, Christian, what have you. I will draw the line on Satanists or atheists.

He later retracted that statement.

[Read more...]

After FFRF Calls Him Out, Delaware High School Football Coach Remains on the Sideline During Team’s Postgame Prayer

Earlier this month, in a local newspaper’s article about how student-led prayers after football games were absolutely legal, there was a picture that showed — wait for it — Coach Bill Collick of Cape Henlopen High School either leading or joining his team in prayer (both of which are unconstitutional):

The Freedom From Religion Foundation sent a letter to the the district about the prayer and, as you might imagine, people are very upset that anyone is calling them out on their legal violations, including an opposing coach who also prays with his team:

[Read more...]

Man Who Crashed Into Oklahoma’s Ten Commandments Monument Was Diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder and Off His Meds

You may have heard by now that, over the weekend, someone drove a car into the Ten Commandments monument on the Oklahoma Capitol lawn.

Oklahoma police already have a suspect in hand: Michael Tate Reed Jr. Reed is supposedly a Christian who claimed Satan made him drive into the monument. That wasn’t all he said this weekend:

[Read more...]

Faith Healer Played a Major Part in the Spread of Ebola in West Africa

Via Richard Preston‘s fantastic and alarming New Yorker article on the genesis and spread of Ebola, we learn that a major early vector of the current epidemic was an unidentified faith-healing fraudster. Preston tells of a Sierra Leone woman who

… had been at the funeral of a faith healer who had recently been to Guinea and had died after attempting to heal a number of people sick with Ebola. … Teams of epidemiologists and health workers spread out from Kenema and identified twelve more women who were sick with Ebola. All of them had been at the funeral of the faith healer.

[Read more...]

Christian Files Open Records Request for Strippers’ Names and Addresses… So He Can Pray for Them

David Van Vleet is one of those Christians who thinks he’s doing society a favor by being all sorts of creepy. He recently filed an open records request to obtain the legal names, addresses, birthdates, photos, and other pieces of biographical information from 70 workers at a local Tacoma (Washington) strip club.

And it’s all for Jesus:

[Read more...]