In today’s News:
Ohio wedding business challenges county law
Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys representing a Cleveland minister and wedding business owner filed suit in federal court Wednesday challenging a Cuyahoga County law that forces her to use her ministry and business to officiate and compose homilies, vows, and prayers for same-sex weddings if she officiates or promotes weddings between one man and one woman. Cuyahoga County also forbids Kristi Stokes and her business, Covenant Weddings, from publicly explaining on her own website and social media sites the religious reasons why she only celebrates weddings between one man and one woman. The county considers such communications to be unlawful “discrimination” based on sexual orientation. The law threatens fines of $1,000-$5,000 per violation, depending on their frequency, and the threat of investigation and expensive legal fees.
NAACP sues to take funds from non-public schools
The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is the latest entity to file a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Education over its guidance that local education agencies must use federal coronavirus aid to provide “equitable services to students and teachers in non-public schools.” The lawsuit contends that Congress intended the cares act, which the president signed into law March 27, to apportion coronavirus relief funds based on the number of low-income students at both public and private schools in each district, “in the same manner” as Title I funds. In contrast, an Education Department rule stated that the funds ought to be distributed based on the total number of students in both public and private schools, resulting in fewer dollars for public schools, the lawsuit contends. The Education Department amended the rule in late June, following concerns that Catholic and other non-public schools were being excluded from sufficient epidemic relief funds to support protective equipment for students and teachers, cleaning, training in remote education, and distance education tools.
California challenged to permit in-home Bible study
A multi-campus church has filed a complaint in federal court against California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s covid-19 executive order that it believes effectively bans church members from holding Bible studies and other small group meetings in their homes. The new lawsuit was filed last Saturday on behalf of the Pasadena-based Harvest Rock Church, which has campuses throughout the state, and Harvest International Ministries, a nonprofit corporation with 162 member churches statewide and more than 65,000 affiliates worldwide. Both organizations are led by Ché Ahn, an author and international chancellor of Wagner University who has been seen on networks like Trinity Broadcasting Network and GODTV. The legal complaint says the governor’s order earlier this month that bans all indoor worship services in as many as 30 counties on the state’s covid-19 county monitoring list also bans members from gathering at each other’s homes for Bible studies in those counties.