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Posted 24 Feb 2001   For week ended September 03, 2000
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News about Mormons, Mormonism,
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Sent on Mormon-News: 30Aug00

Summarized by Kent Larsen

Santa Fe Texas Group to Hold Prayer at High School Football Game

SANTA FE, TEXAS -- Efforts to protest the US Supreme Court's ban on school-organized prayers at High School football games are returning to where the dispute started this weekend. An alliance of Santa Fe, Texas ministers is expecting 10,000 people to recite the Lord's Prayer immediately after the national anthem is played at this Friday's Santa Fe High School football game. The Supreme Court case came when a Mormon and a Catholic family sued the district over is sponsorship of religious activities on school grounds and its humiliation of a Mormon student.

The Ministerial Alliance of Santa Fe and Hitchcock, a group of 11 area ministers, encouraged those attending the game to pray. Another Texas group, No Pray, No Play, has gone further than the ministers, calling for people from all over Texas to come to the game. Led by Temple, Texas lay leader Kody Shed, the group expects as many as 10,000 people to come to the game. The attendance prediction, which exceeds double the stadium's capacity, has led the Santa Fe police to beef up security for the event.

The ministers say that the prayer will actually be legal, because it is not organized by school officials. "The prayer will be spontaneous," said Rev. Eugene Easterly, pastor of Santa Fe's Aldersgate United Methodist Church and president of the Ministerial Alliance. "It will not be led by anyone. Prayer has been a part of this (football) experience for a long time here in Santa Fe, and I think it will happen this way."

The ministers also say that the school didn't participate in planning the effort. "We've talked to the school board, and we believe we will not be in violation of anything," said Easterly. The school's trustees earlier announced that it would not challenge the Supreme Court ruling by authorizing prayers at the game.

Meanwhile, a website for No Pray, No Play warned those attending the game that the prayer will happen. "If you are someone that doesn't like to be exposed to prayer, you may want to show up a little late for the game. We can sympathize with you and understand your frustration. Christians have to turn their heads, close their ears and change their channels to avoid exposure to things we don't like everyday."

T-shirts with the No Pray, No Play group's logo are already circulating in Santa Fe and the group is trying to get the local fairgrounds for a rally after the prayer. Meanwhile, Shed is 'shaking down' the media, charging $5,000 for telephone interviews and up to $250,000 for a television appearance. He says CBS' Early Show has already turned him down, saying that the network never pays for interviews.


Santa Fe Texas Group to Hold Prayer at High School Football Game
Houston TX Chronicle 30Aug00 N1
By Kevin Moran: Houston Chronicle


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See also:
Mormon News' Coverage of the Santa Fe Texas School Prayer Case

Copyright 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 Kent Larsen · Privacy Information