Connellsville group urges school district to continue Ten Commandments fight
A Monday night rally by the Thou Shall Not Move group in front of the covered Ten Commandments monument at Connellsville Junior High School was followed by the group encouraging the school board not to give up the fight to keep the monument.
“We want to see this all the way through legally,” said the Rev. Ewing Marietta before a group of Thou Shall Not Move members around the boarded-up Ten Commandments monument.
The group held the rally prior to Monday's agenda session of the Connellsville Area School Board.
The group was formed over a year ago after the Freedom From Religion Foundation filed a lawsuit on behalf of an atheist who wanted the monument removed from the then Connellsville Junior High East where it was erected in 1957.
The district did not remove the monument, which has been boarded up, and has agreed to fight in court to keep it at the current location.
Following the rally, the group attended the non-voting agenda meeting for Connellsville Area School Board, where members encouraged the board to keep up the fight.
“Please, from the bottom of my heart, don't give up this fight,” Dennis McKendry, a Connellsville High School graduate and veteran, pleaded with the board.
Gary Colatch of Connellsville told the board that the argument of separation of church and state is a falsehood. The nation's capital has many religious symbols that remain to this day, he said, recently shown to him by evangelist and historian David Barton.
“In the Capitol Rotunda, there's a painting on the wall, not hanging on the wall, but painted on the wall, of the baptism of Pocahontas,” Colatch said.
Marietta said the Fraternal Order of Eagles made the push to place the Ten Commandments on school properties like the one in Connellsville in the 1950s. Marietta said the intention was not to push religion onto people, but to give children a good, moral code to follow.
The organization presented the board with a check for $5,477 from donations made to the group to help fight the ongoing legal battle.
“There's a lot of people behind you,” Marietta said, adding the group will continue to raise money to help the district with legal costs in the case.
Chris Stern, the district's solicitor, who said he's not charging the district for his work on the Ten Commandments case, thanked the group for the donation. But Stern said the district could not accept the check until he consulted with the Andrews & Price law firm in Wilkinsburg, which is handling the case for the district.
The Thou Shall Not Move group will hold its next meeting at the Connellsville Eagles at 5:30 p.m. June 19.
Mark Hofmann is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-626-3539 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Flooding hits streams, basements
- Highlands Hospital reports strong 2014
- Home invasion suspect from Uniontown guilty
- Local lawmakers question Wolf’s budget plan
- Connellsville planners OK hotel proposal
- Program recognizes Connellsville Career and Technical Center students
- ‘Hairspray Jr.’ comes to Connellsville
- Man admits to posing as doctor to con Nemacolin resort
- Laurel Highlands Ambassador Program offers insight into history of Connellsville coal, coke region
- Mt. Pleasant council picks police chief
- St. Rita of Cascia Roman Catholic Church marks centennial in Connellsville