By Christy Barritt
Group Distributes Bibles in Public Schools
World Changers of Florida recently distributed Bibles at high schools in Orange County.
World Changers is a conservative organization of concerned citizens who want to influence the world by engaging in local, state, national, and international government. Members of the organization left Bibles on tables in the cafeteria during lunchtime for any interested students to pick up and take home.
By law, the group could place the Bibles in the schools only during non-instructional time and had to remove any undistributed literature at the end of the day.
In 2010, the organization sued another school district in Florida for attempting to bar the group from “passive distribution.” They legally won the right to pass out the Bibles.
The volunteers hope to pass out Bibles in other Florida high schools in the future.
Teen Activist Fights Against Creationism
Zack Kopplin has been fighting for the past five years to have creationism removed from classrooms in Louisiana public schools.
In 2008, the state passed the Louisiana Science Education Act, which makes it easier for teachers to introduce creationist textbooks in the classroom and therefore teach intelligent design and alternate views on topics such as global warming.
Kopplin was a student when this law went into effect. At 14, he wrote a research paper arguing that creationism isn’t a science. For his high school senior project, he tried to get the bill repealed. He began a petition, which was signed by 78 Nobel laureates.
Today, the 19-year-old studies history at Rice University in Houston, Texas and continues to argue against the law.
“We are hurting the chances of our students having jobs in science and making discoveries that will change the world,” Kopplin said in an interview with io9.com.
Teacher Suspended for Giving Student a Bible
A substitute teacher in New Jersey was suspended after quoting a verse of Scripture and giving a student a copy of the Bible during work hours.
The teacher quoted Matthew 20:16, which says, “So the last will be first, and the first will be last,” to a student who was last in line to leave the classroom. When the student asked numerous times where the phrase came from, the teacher told him it was from the Bible. The student then said he didn’t own a Bible, so the teacher loaned him a copy of his New Testament.
The Phillipsburg School District decided the teacher was guilty of violating two policies during the incident and he was suspended for the rest of the school year. District officials said the substitute teacher broke two district policies: one that prohibits employees from distributing religious literature on school grounds, and another that requires educators to remain neutral while discussing religious materials.
The teacher has sought legal counsel after the incident.
European Court of Human Rights Rules Against Christians
The European Court of Human Rights ruled in favor of one Christian, but told three others they have no right to act on their beliefs.
The UK’s Christian Institute brought up the case on behalf of four Christians who’d been penalized in their place of employment due to their Christian beliefs. Two employees were disciplined at work for wearing crosses and two other employees were disciplined because they didn’t
endorse homosexual partnerships.
In three out of the four cases, the court found that the sanctions and dismissal from employment did not violate Article 9, or Freedom of Religion, by the European Convention on Human Rights. Only one employee, who was told to remove a cross necklace by British Airlines, won her case.
Two justices dissented and issued a minority ruling that stated, “The state is obliged to respect the individual’s freedom of conscience.”
Christy Barritt is an award-winning author, freelance writer, and speaker living in Chesapeake, Virginia. She and her husband Scott have two sons.