In 2009, a Good News Club came to the public elementary school where Katherine Stewart sent her children. The Club, which is sponsored by the Child Evangelism Fellowship, bills itself as an after-school program of “Bible study.” But Stewart soon discovered that the Club’s real mission is to convert young children to a fundamentalist form of the Christian faith by giving them the false but unavoidable impression that their school favors their religion. As she dug deeper, Stewart realized that the Good News Club is just one part of a much larger story that should be of concern to everyone who cares about public education, our civil liberties, and the future of our country as a modern secular democracy.
In 2012, Stewart published an investigative book titled The Good News Club: The Christian Right’s Stealth Assault on America’s Children (Public Affairs). She also began speaking and writing on the issues. Her work has appeared in The Nation, The New York Times, Slate, The Atlantic, the Guardian, Religion Dispatches and others.
Stewart gives talks on how religious extremists are infiltrating and undermining public education; how radical activists are misusing the term “religious liberty” to undermine freedom and our constitutional principles; the war on science education in the U.S.; and the attack on women’s autonomy and the rights of senior citizens and LGBT Americans. She was named 2014 Person of the Year by Americans United for Separation of Church and State.
A Boston native, Stewart got her start in investigative journalism working for Wayne Barrett at The Village Voice. She published two novels, in 2005 and 2006, and cowrote a book about the musical Rent.
Katherine is well-versed in the Religious Right & religious freedom, and can speak to the following issues:
Radical Right Attacks On Education
Fundamentalists' Focus On Children
Foundations of Religious liberty & Church-State Separation
Death With Dignity