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Federal Court Says AU Challenge To Pa. Legislative Prayer May Proceed

A federal court ruled April 28 that a legal challenge to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ legislative prayer practice sponsored by Americans United may proceed.

AU, which brought the case along with American Atheists, welcomed the decision in Fields v. Speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

Challenge To Pennsylvania House Of Representatives’ Legislative Prayer Practices Can Proceed, Court Rules

Church-State Watchdog Group Sponsoring Litigation Welcomes Ruling

A federal court today ruled that a legal challenge to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ legislative prayer practice can proceed.

Americans United for Separation of Church and State, which is sponsoring the litigation along with American Atheists, welcomed the decision in Fields v. Speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

Why We’re Seeking Equal Treatment For Non-Theistic Invocations In The Pennsylvania House Of Representatives

By Brian Fields

Here Are The Top Ten Church-State Stories From 2016

In late December, you start seeing “Top Ten” lists for the year that was. So without further ado, here are the Top Ten Church-State Stories from 2016 (in my humble opinion, at least):

Non-Theists Need Not Apply

When Deana Weaver, a mem­ber of Dillsburg Area Freethinkers, asked to deliver a non-theistic message before a meeting of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, she was told no.

“My state representative and the House leadership refused to allow me to deliver an opening invocation to the House because I do not believe in a deity,” Weaver said in a recent interview with Americans United. “This makes me feel that I am not being represented in the House on account of my beliefs concerning religion.”

Why People Of Faith Should Support Non-Theistic Invocations

The biblical book of Acts tells a story about the Apostle Paul, known as the greatest church planter in the history of Christianity, walking through the streets of Athens and encountering people from diverse faiths and belief systems.

If you’ve read any of Paul’s letters, you know he was an intense and passionate man, dedicated to evangelizing as many people as he could. Yet, his approach to the Athenians, a people living in a pluralistic society, was not one where he set out to negate or repudiate the value of other religions being practiced.

Why We're In Court: Plaintiffs Seek Equal Treatment For Non-Theists In Pennsylvania

Editor’s Note: Today Americans United and American Atheists filed a lawsuit challenging the Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ invocation policy, which excludes non-theistic voices. Three of the plaintiffs in the case, Brian Fields, Deana Weaver and Scott Rhoades, recently took part in a Q&A and explained what motivated them to get involved in this litigation.