Church promotion barking up the wrong tree (January 26, 2023)

When a Christian organization began promoting a local church at Davis High School in California, FFRF successfully stepped in and prevented it from occurring again.

On Sept. 21, 2022, the LLC K9 Comfort Ministry reportedly brought a comfort dog to Davis High School. Along with the dog, the ministry handed out materials to students listing the address and website of the church. The use of a comfort dog was justified as “a bridge for compassionate ministry, opening doors for conversation about faith and creating opportunities to share the mercy, compassion, presence and proclamation of Jesus Christ.”

“It is inappropriate and unconstitutional for the district to offer religious leaders unique access to students,” wrote FFRF Staff Attorney Chris Line in a letter to Superintendent Matt Best. “While schools can certainly bring in comfort dogs for students, they must not be used as a means for church recruitment and to advance a religious mission.”

FFRF received a response from Associate Superintendent Laura Juanitas, stating that, “in recognition of your concerns, I have asked the school to stop this activity and the dog will no longer be coming on campus.”

 

Freedom From Religion Foundation