NYC Churches Fight On to Hold Services in Public Schools
Churches in New York City brought their case to court Friday, fighting for the right to use public schools for Sunday services, CBN News reports. The NYC Department of Education evicted more than 60 congregations in February following a December 2011 Supreme Court decision not to hear an appeal in a case that began 16 years ago when the Bronx Household of Faith sued the city over a school policy preventing churches from holding worship services in public schools. After a federal injunction, the churches were allowed to return to the school buildings until June, and now city councilman Fernando Cabrera is working on a permanent solution. Cabrera has measures before the city council, the state House and the state Senate, and has received a "green light from my speaker that he's going to allow the vote to come to the floor," he said. "We're looking forward to passing it in the city council to send a very loud message to the state legislators that the city of New York of 9 million people that live here are in full support of this legislation." Many observers have wondered why the city would want to force churches out of public schools, but Pastor Dimas Salaberrios of Infinity Church in the Bronx says he believes homosexual activists are behind the push. Leaders from the gay community revealed their opposition during a hearing at a meeting at city hall, he said. "It was quite evident that the LGBT community stood up and said, 'You guys are preaching a doctrine that's against gay marriage and that's why we're coming against you guys.' ... Our hope and our prayer is that this would come to some permanent solution before the end of June so it doesn't have to be a court battle."