Yesterday, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced that it is changing longstanding policy in order to allow the government to use taxpayer money to rebuild houses of worship damaged in disasters. This is a change that should concern us all.
History likely will remember a lot of things about the first year of Donald Trump’s presidency, and one of those things will be his use of Twitter.
A federal court on Dec. 7 denied an emergency request from three Texas churches seeking access to federal disaster funding to rebuild sanctuaries damaged during Hurricane Harvey.
The churches – Harvest Family Church in Cypress, First Assembly of God in Rockport and Hi-Way Tabernacle in Cleveland – sued the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) on Sept. 4, demanding taxpayer aid to help them rebuild sanctuaries, a fellowship hall, a steeple, pastoral offices and a parsonage.
There’s no denying that 2017 was a tough year for advocates of religious freedom and church-state separation. Yet despite the barrage of assaults from the Donald Trump-Mike Pence administration, Americans United saw important victories in and out of court.
As we look ahead to 2018, here’s a list of what are, in our opinion, the top 10 church-state stories from 2017: