BREMEN, Ind. — In emails to several parents, the president of the Bremen Public Schools’ Board of Trustees, states he and other board members will continue to offer prayer before board meetings despite a claim from the Superintendent that prayer has been discontinued.
This comes after a REAL News Michiana story that uncovered a complaint from a local non-profit with ties to the Satanic Temple. The complaint, initiated by the Northern Indiana Atheists, decried prayer at the meetings as a violation of the separation of church and state. You can read the entire complaint here.
In response to an inquiry by RNM, Bremen Public Schools Superintendent James White sent the following statement in an email:
“Since my hire nearly eight years ago, it has historically been the community norm to offer a prayer to start our Board meetings.” White wrote. “While I knew such activities were technically ‘out of bounds’, I respected the tradition. However, upon receiving the complaint, the Board has elected to cease the practice.”
Multiple parents reached out to School Board President Brian Teall about the end of prayer at the meetings. Those parents provided emails from Teall to RNM where he claims the board is still offering prayer at meetings.
“I apologize for an confusion, but prayer still does take place before our board meetings, including at the past school board meeting in February. I know this because I participated in the prayer, which took place at 6:20 pm with Mr. Huff and I. You are more than welcome to come pray with board members, and this is also an open invitation to anyone. Hopefully, we will see you there.” Teall wrote.
RNM reached out to Teall regarding the Board’s prayer stance. As of publication, he has not responded.
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