Saturday, December 31, 2011

Local Pastor Tells Whopper About School Prayer

According to the Canadian Press, local pastor Mark Koehler's telling fibbies about school prayer in Ontario.

He is quoted as saying, "We’ve taken prayer out of school. We can’t say certain greetings at Christmas time."

Really? Students are prevented from praying in Ontario schools? That's news to me.

Pastor Koehler is legally prevented from saying "certain greetings"? I wonder what law that is.

The truth is that prayer has not been taken out of school. Rather, in Zylberberg v. Sudbury Board, the Ontario Court of Appeal ruled that a sectarian prayer offered by school administrators violated the Charter. This doesn't mean students can't pray on their own.

And of course, there's nothing preventing Koehler from saying "Merry Christmas" to anyone he wants.

Pastor Koehler should read his own Bible - I seem to remember the 9th commandment had something relevant.


Eohippus said...

"There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers."

The good Pastor may have scored a few abominations. I wouldn't want to be in his shoes come judgement day.

Happy New Year Jeffrey! Keep them coming!

Melville said...

Frankly, I trust that newspapers always quote people completely, and in context.

Jeffrey Shallit said...


I recommend a career in law.

Bayesian Bouffant, FCD said...

This appears to be the same lie that is prevalent in the USA - that any challenge to state-sponsorship of Christian dominance is oppression of religion.

Miranda said...

Bayesian, it might surprise you to hear that I agree with you.

Anonymous said...

A similar example appeared recently in the New York Times, "Battling Anew Over the Place of Religion in Public Schools," December 27, 2011.  The article cites several examples of illegal religious proselytizing in U.S. public schools.  Then, for "balance," I guess, it quotes the president of the Liberty Institute, a Christian legal group in Plano, Texas, who refers to "one continuing legal case in which 'children had pencils ripped out of their hands' because they carried a Christian message and students were 'banned from writing Merry Christmas to the soldiers.'"  On the assumption that the Liberty Institute folks don't read blogs like this, I'll suggest that they would be better propagandists if they can come up with more plausible lies.