Christian revival at school prompts student walkout in W.Va.

  
Via:  sandy-2021492  •  5 months ago  •  55 comments

By:   LEAH WILLINGHAM

Christian revival at school prompts student walkout in W.Va.
 

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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (AP) — Between calculus and European history classes at a West Virginia public high school, 16-year-old Cameron Mays and his classmates were told by their teacher to go to an evangelical Christian revival assembly.

When students arrived at the event in the school's auditorium, they were instructed to close their eyes and raise their arms in prayer, Mays said. The teens were asked to give their lives over to Jesus to find purpose and salvation. Those who did not follow the Bible would go to hell when they died, they were told.


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sandy-2021492
Professor Principal
1  seeder  sandy-2021492    5 months ago

Credit to Kavika for finding this.  I knew it had happened from local TV stations' Facebook pages, but didn't realize it had made national news.

I guess some folks don't think much of the First Amendment.

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
2  Kavika     5 months ago

Bizarre to say the least. 

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
2.1  devangelical  replied to  Kavika @2    4 months ago

sounds a lot like the school indoctrination bullshit republicans are always whining about. f'n thumpers...

 
 
 
JBB
Professor Principal
3  JBB    5 months ago

I bet most Christians don't approve of this travesty!

I'd be mad as hell if my kid was submitted to this...

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
Professor Principal
4  Perrie Halpern R.A.    5 months ago

Seems that someone at the school board meetings missed American History when they taught separation of Church and state.

 
 
 
Gsquared
Senior Expert
5  Gsquared    5 months ago

Outrageous and unacceptable.

 
 
 
JBB
Professor Principal
5.1  JBB  replied to  Gsquared @5    5 months ago

original

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Principal
5.1.1  Krishna  replied to  JBB @5.1    4 months ago

"Thought Question":

Which of those 3 books has caused the least harm to humanity over time?

 
 
 
JBB
Professor Principal
5.1.2  JBB  replied to  Krishna @5.1.1    4 months ago

I'm not sure, but I know it wasn't Spider Man...

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6  Drakkonis    4 months ago
More than 1,000 students attend Huntington High. The mini revival took place last week during COMPASS, a daily, “noninstructional” break in the schedule during which students can study for tests, work on college prep or listen to guest speakers, said Cabell County Schools spokesperson Jedd Flowers.

I think this is kind of important in trying to understand what happened and why, especially the part about guest speakers. I'd like to know more about what that means. Then...

Flowers said the event was voluntary, organized by the school’s chapter of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. He said there was supposed to be a signup sheet for students, but two teachers mistakenly brought their entire class.

So, what probably happened is that the speaker at this event, believing everyone was there voluntarily, proceeded as if they were. I think this wasn't intentionally trying to force anything on anyone. It was just a misunderstanding. 

Of course, for most of you, that won't be the point. Voluntary or not, you probably don't believe they should have been there for any reason. For me, it would depend on who these 'guest speakers' were before I made a decision on that. What sorts of things do these guest speakers talk about? I think that would be an important factor.  

 
 
 
Just Jim NC TttH
Masters Principal
6.1  Just Jim NC TttH  replied to  Drakkonis @6    4 months ago

Ahh the voice of reason and research. Thanks Drak

 
 
 
XXJefferson51
Senior Guide
6.1.1  XXJefferson51  replied to  Just Jim NC TttH @6.1    4 months ago

[deleted

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Principal
6.2  seeder  sandy-2021492  replied to  Drakkonis @6    4 months ago

I think they can be there, so long as the local mosque can also send speakers.  Same with the local chapter of the Satanic Church.  Hmmm, I wonder what the chances of an open-arm welcome for those two groups would be? 

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
6.2.1  Vic Eldred  replied to  sandy-2021492 @6.2    4 months ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
6.2.2  Kavika   replied to  sandy-2021492 @6.2    4 months ago
Hmmm, I wonder what the chances of an open-arm welcome for those two groups would be? 

LOL, is that a trick question, sandy?

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6.2.3  Drakkonis  replied to  sandy-2021492 @6.2    4 months ago
I think they can be there, so long as the local mosque can also send speakers.  Same with the local chapter of the Satanic Church.  Hmmm, I wonder what the chances of an open-arm welcome for those two groups would be? 

If you mean Christian reaction, it would depend on who you spoke to or have in mind, I suppose. I wouldn't be happy about the Satanic Church being there but I would not raise any objection to it because I understand what the Constitution has to say on the subject. Of course, there are those who would object to it and fight against it. For them, it isn't about what the Constitution says but what they consider true and right. You know, like pretty much everyone with a cause does in one way or another? Nothing unusual about it, really. 

Personally, I think they took an unfortunate misunderstanding and tried to make a separation case out of it when it was never there to begin with. If this was just an accident then a little common sense on one's part should see it as such and just let it go. 

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
6.2.4  Split Personality  replied to  Drakkonis @6.2.3    4 months ago

wth Drak?

Would it be ok to have the local RCC  Monsignor come in and have a Mass in a public institution?

Hell No.

SEPARATION of Church & State, means SEPARATION.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
6.2.5  Ozzwald  replied to  Drakkonis @6.2.3    4 months ago
I wouldn't be happy about the Satanic Church being there but I would not raise any objection to it because I understand what the Constitution has to say on the subject.

The Church of Satan is a religious organization dedicated to Satanism as codified in The Satanic Bible -- embracing not the occult but individualism, materialism and the ego. The Church of Satan was established at the Black House in San Francisco, California, on Walpurgisnacht, April 30, 1966, by Anton Szandor LaVey, who was the Church's High Priest until his death in 1997. In 2001, Peter H. Gilmore was appointed the position of High Priest, and the church's headquarters were moved to Hell's Kitchen, Manhattan, New York City.[2] The church's headquarters is now located in Poughkeepsie, New York.

The Church does not believe in the Devil, neither a Christian nor Islamic notion of Satan.[3] Peter H. Gilmore describes its members as "skeptical atheists", embracing the Hebrew root of the word "Satan" as "adversary". The Church views Satan as a positive archetype who represents pride, individualism, and enlightenment, and as a symbol of defiance against the Abrahamic faiths which LaVey criticized for what he saw as the suppression of humanity's natural instincts.

The Church of Satan considers itself the adversary to "organized religion", not to theists individually.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6.2.6  Drakkonis  replied to  Split Personality @6.2.4    4 months ago
Would it be ok to hve the local RCC  Monsignor come in and have a Mass in a public institution?

Yes, actually. That is, there's no legal barrier to it, anyway. Suppose that it was arranged by students that, in a particular room, before the first class started, there was a priest giving Mass to any student who cared to attend. Same goes if an Atheist speaker, brought in a similar way would also be okay. 

SEPARATION of Church & State, means SEPARATION.

Actually, it isn't the Separation clause, it is the Establishment clause, which says "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion." The meaning isn't ambiguous. It says that Congress cannot create a law where students have to attend a Christian worship period at school. It can't create a law identifying Christianity or any other religion as the national religion. It can't write laws that compel religious behavior. The idea is that there should be a separation of Church and State for the purpose of not mandating any individual's personal conscience and to avoid the State/Church entanglement that caused so much division throughout European history. 

It does not mean no religious expression whatsoever in the public sphere. It cannot mean that without distorting the Establishment clause to exclude religion from the public sphere, which it was never intended to do. Trying to do so would actually be a violation of the clause in that it would be making Secularism the State sponsored religion. 

Unfortunately, many think, or try to convince others to believe, that the Establishment clause means no religious activity whatsoever in the public sphere. Strangely, they don't see this as exactly the same thing they complain against. That is, they would have kittens if the school board members tried to include religious education in the curriculum but think nothing of trying to impose their own views concerning religion or the Establishment clause on the school board. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6.2.7  Drakkonis  replied to  Ozzwald @6.2.5    4 months ago
The Church of Satan...

Thanks for sharing this information but I already knew all of this. Was there a larger point besides just information on your mind?

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Principal
6.2.8  Krishna  replied to  Drakkonis @6.2.7    4 months ago
Was there a larger point besides just information on your mind?

Are you suggesting that posting information here is somehow inappropriate?

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
6.2.9  Trout Giggles  replied to  Drakkonis @6.2.3    4 months ago
I think they took an unfortunate misunderstanding and tried to make a separation case out of it when it was never there to begin with

The teachers who told the students to go to that assembly were the ones violating the Establishment Clause. They should be severely censored/admonished and given an assignment to research the First Amendment and write a 500 word essay on it

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Principal
6.2.10  seeder  sandy-2021492  replied to  Trout Giggles @6.2.9    4 months ago

And made to apologize to the students in question, publicly.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Principal
6.2.11  seeder  sandy-2021492  replied to  Drakkonis @6.2.3    4 months ago

I mean the reaction in general.  Intelligent Christians know this was wrong.  Some Christians are defending it on Facebook.  I'm betting the intelligent ones would think the anti-American ones were getting their comeuppance.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
6.2.12  Ozzwald  replied to  Drakkonis @6.2.7    4 months ago
Was there a larger point besides just information on your mind?

Nope, just general info.  Don't want people thinking the Church of Satan is actually a devil worshipping cult of Christianity.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6.2.13  Drakkonis  replied to  Krishna @6.2.8    4 months ago
Are you suggesting that posting information here is somehow inappropriate?

No. I was literally asking him if there was something specific he wanted to talk about that I was missing. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6.2.14  Drakkonis  replied to  Trout Giggles @6.2.9    4 months ago
he teachers who told the students to go to that assembly were the ones violating the Establishment Clause.

Assuming they even knew what the assembly was for. They may not have, beyond thinking there was some required assembly. 

 
 
 
XXJefferson51
Senior Guide
6.2.15  XXJefferson51  replied to  Vic Eldred @6.2.1    4 months ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6.2.16  Drakkonis  replied to  sandy-2021492 @6.2.11    4 months ago
I mean the reaction in general.  Intelligent Christians know this was wrong.

Well, I think I'm a reasonably intelligent Christian. I think this was likely a misunderstanding, not wrong in the sense this was done intentionally. If it was, I would also agree it was wrong. Unfortunately, we don't get a lot of answers to obvious questions concerning this incident. Rather, it seems to be written with the goal of creating indignation, even though the article states that what happened was simply an accident. There certainly doesn't seem to be any evidence presented that shows this happened intentionally. 

And made to apologize to the students in question, publicly.

If the teachers knew what the assembly was about, I would agree. If not, then simply apologizing in the classroom should be enough. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6.2.17  Drakkonis  replied to  Ozzwald @6.2.12    4 months ago
Nope, just general info.

Okay. Didn't want to leave you hangin if I was missing something. 

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
6.2.18  Trout Giggles  replied to  Drakkonis @6.2.14    4 months ago

Don't assume anything here. Students tend to do what they're told. If there was no agenda or information beforehand about this assembly, then the teacher(s) should have told them. IMO, the teacher that ordered them to go this assembly was probably a zealot. I had a few teachers in my public school that were zealots and tried to bring God into everything. Can you imagine a biology teacher that doesn't believe in the Theory of Evolution?

This kind of stuff happens in rural schools because everybody in the community is usually of a like mind. I have lived in rural communities all my life. I know what I'm talking about

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
6.2.19  TᵢG  replied to  Trout Giggles @6.2.18    4 months ago

Somebody in school administration knew that this was a religious event (or a particular denomination even) taking place during normal curricular times on school property and that students were told to attend.

Either that or it was an example of utter incompetence and miscommunications.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
6.2.20  Trout Giggles  replied to  TᵢG @6.2.19    4 months ago

I'm going with a little of one but a whole lot of the other. And the other is not the incompetence.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6.2.21  Drakkonis  replied to  Trout Giggles @6.2.18    4 months ago
Don't assume anything here.

That's good advice. But why, then, did you go on to write:

IMO, the teacher that ordered them to go this assembly was probably a zealot.

Personally, I'd like to have more facts. If it turns out that this was intentional then something needs to be done about the people who made it happen. If it really was an accident, figure out how to keep it from happening again. The goal should be to make sure rights aren't violated. Either the students who do not want to attend such things or the one's who do. 

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
6.2.22  Trout Giggles  replied to  Drakkonis @6.2.21    4 months ago

I said it was my opinion based on past experience.

It's not necessary to constantly repeat the same words over and over again

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
6.2.23  devangelical  replied to  Trout Giggles @6.2.22    4 months ago
constantly repeat the same words over and over again

you're going to be disappointed...

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
6.2.24  Trout Giggles  replied to  devangelical @6.2.23    4 months ago

I'm always disappointed. Nothing new

 
 
 
XXJefferson51
Senior Guide
6.2.25  XXJefferson51  replied to  Drakkonis @6.2.21    4 months ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
6.3  devangelical  replied to  Drakkonis @6    4 months ago
What sorts of things do these guest speakers talk about?

... bible thumping?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
6.4  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @6    4 months ago
I think this is kind of important in trying to understand what happened and why, especially the part about guest speakers. I'd like to know more about what that means. Then...

Yes there are always missing details so there is likely much more under the covers.   But we can also discuss the seed as presented since it is brief and presents a principled question:

Between calculus and European history classes at a West Virginia public high school, 16-year-old Cameron Mays and his classmates were told by their teacher to go to an evangelical Christian revival assembly. When students arrived at the event in the school's auditorium, they were instructed to close their eyes and raise their arms in prayer, Mays said. The teens were asked to give their lives over to Jesus to find purpose and salvation. Those who did not follow the Bible would go to hell when they died, they were told.

The principled question this yields is:

Is it a violation of the 1st amendment to use the authority of a public school to demand a student attend a religious indoctrination event?

Note, it is not a violation to have a religious revival (or an atheist club meeting) on a public campus.   But this must be optional and take place during noncurricular time.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6.4.1  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @6.4    4 months ago
Is it a violation of the 1st amendment to use the authority of a public school to demand a student attend a religious indoctrination event?

Yes, that would be a violation. Is that what happened, though? Can't tell from the article. You present the following evidence:

Between calculus and European history classes at a West Virginia public high school, 16-year-old Cameron Mays and his classmates were told by their teacher to go to an evangelical Christian revival assembly. When students arrived at the event in the school's auditorium, they were instructed to close their eyes and raise their arms in prayer, Mays said. The teens were asked to give their lives over to Jesus to find purpose and salvation. Those who did not follow the Bible would go to hell when they died, they were told.

Questions that need to be answered concerning this.

  1. Did the teachers tell their students this was a Christian revival assembly or is Mays relaying what the assembly turned out to be?
  2. Did the pastor know that there were students who were there involuntarily? 
  3. Were the students instructed or invited to close their eyes and raise their hands in prayer? 
  4. Given the proclivity of people these days to video everything, is there any video of what was said and in what way?

In my opinion, making a decision on this from the article alone seems reactionary. I'd like to have more information before I came to a conclusion. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
6.4.2  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @6.4.1    4 months ago
Is that what happened, though? Can't tell from the article. You present the following evidence:

As I noted in my post, let's just take the seed as written and consider the principled question.

In my opinion, making a decision on this from the article alone seems reactionary.

Again, Drakk, I specifically framed my point as a hypothetical that enables discussing a principled question.    Why respond if you are going to ignore what I wrote?:

TiG @6.4 ☞ Yes there are always missing details so there is likely much more under the covers.   But we can also discuss the seed as presented since it is brief and presents a principled question:
 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6.4.3  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @6.4.2    4 months ago
Again, Drakk, I specifically framed my point as a hypothetical that enables discussing a principled question.    Why respond if you are going to ignore what I wrote?:

Why are you saying I ignored what you wrote?

Yes, that would be a violation. 6.4.1

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
6.4.4  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @6.4.3    4 months ago

Because your entire post after that focused on missing details that I upfront recognized as such.   I expressed the futility of discussing this particular case based on the facts given we likely are missing plenty of facts.

You answered the principled question and then moved directly to “Is that what happened, though?” as the focus and near entirety of your post.

As I stated upfront, we do not know the details.   We can speculate endlessly.   All I can offer to the balance of your post is to simply state again that we do not know all the facts.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6.4.5  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @6.4.4    4 months ago
You answered the principled question and then moved directly to “Is that what happened, though?”

Okay. What else is there to discuss? Is there something not covered by "Yes, that would be a violation"? If you just want to discuss the article as written, where do you want to go from here?  

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
6.4.6  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @6.4.5    4 months ago

No, there really is nothing left to discuss.   Given we agree on the answer to the principled question, the only thing left is blind speculation.   As I noted, I do not see how that is valuable.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
6.4.7  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @6.4.6    4 months ago

Okay

 
 
 
XXJefferson51
Senior Guide
6.5  XXJefferson51  replied to  Drakkonis @6    4 months ago

[deleted]  

 
 
 
Hal A. Lujah
Professor Expert
7  Hal A. Lujah    4 months ago

Hmmm … how has this article not been spammed to death with anti-atheist memes by our resident Jesus freak?  The truth is that atheism in the news is almost always a reaction to overt theism and the constant nibbling away at the Establishment Clause through actions like this one.  Atheism isn’t an intrusion into religion, it is a defense to the intrusion from religion.  If it wasn’t for offenses like this nobody would ever hear from atheists at all.  We don’t go running around blathering that there is no god just because that’s what we believe, unlike the religious.

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
7.1  devangelical  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @7    4 months ago
how has this article not been spammed to death with anti-atheist memes by our resident Jesus freak?

let him try. muah ha ha ha...

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
7.2  Trout Giggles  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @7    4 months ago

Give him time

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
7.2.1  devangelical  replied to  Trout Giggles @7.2    4 months ago

check out whose courage threshold ends at voting up the self righteous.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
7.3  Trout Giggles  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @7    4 months ago

see this

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.1  TᵢG  replied to  Trout Giggles @7.3    4 months ago

Tech Tip:   If you type @6.2.15  (@ followed immediately by the comment number) the system will automatically generate a link to the referenced comment.   The link you see in my comment was auto-generated.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
7.3.2  Trout Giggles  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.1    4 months ago

Thank you!

 
 

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