American Humanists Association v. Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission – We are representing The American Legion in this case attacking the Bladensburg (MD) World War I Veterans Memorial. In a lawsuit filed last year, the American Humanists are challenging the constitutionality of this historic veterans memorial. On behalf of The American Legion, we have intervened into this case. Several depositions occurred this past month. We anticipate filing legal motions later this month. Please pray for our attorneys as they continue to work on this case.
Banks v. Ford Motor Company and RGBSI - We filed a charge of discrimination with the EEOC on behalf of Tom Banks against his former employers, Ford Motor Company and Ford contractor, RGBSI, who unlawfully terminated him because of his religious beliefs. Please pray for Mr. Banks’ claim as we seek a resolution with his employers.
Christian and Missionary Alliance Foundation, Inc., et al. v. Burwell – We are representing four CMA retirement communities and two CMA colleges in a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the HHS Abortion Pill Mandate in federal court in Fort Myers, Florida. Earlier this year, the Court granted our request for a preliminary injunction prohibiting enforcement of the mandate. Earlier this month, the federal government filed its appeal of that decision. Please pray for our attorneys as they work on the appeal.
City of Dallas v. Congregation Toras Chaim – Last month, the City of Dallas brought a lawsuit against Congregation Toras Chaim, a small Orthodox Jewish community in north Dallas. This same group of Jewish families just won a lawsuit filed by a disgruntled neighbor to keep the small community from meeting in a private home for prayer, worship and religious study. Last week we filed our response to the lawsuit, including our counter-lawsuit. Please pray for our attorneys as we defend this Jewish congregation
Cornerstone Church v. Town of Bayview (TX) – We represent Cornerstone Church by the Bay, its pastor Hamilton Musser, and Laguna Madre Christian Academy in a lawsuit against the Town of Bayview, Texas for enacting an illegal zoning ordinance prohibiting the church and religious school from operating on its own property. The Court granted our request for a preliminary injunction late last year. We are now working with the City to resolve the matter. Please pray for a successful resolution.
Eschliman v. Shaw Media – We filed a charge of discrimination with the EEOC on behalf of Bob Eschliman, the former Newton Daily News editor-in–chief, against his former employer, Shaw Media, who unlawfully terminated him because of his religious beliefs. Please pray for favor with the EEOC as they continue to investigate this claim.
First Presbyterian Church, Auburn, NY v. Auburn, NY – We are defending a local church from a City’s citation for code violations for holding a summer music camp on its property. The court hearing set for April has been postponed. Please pray for our attorneys as they continue to work on this matter and for the Court as it considers our motion seeking dismissal of this case prior to a final hearing.
Hastings Auto v. Burwell – In December, the U.S. District of Court of Minnesota issued a permanent injunction against the federal government prohibiting enforcement of the HHS Abortion Pill Mandate against our clients Hastings Automotive, Inc., Hastings Chrysler Center, and owner Doug Erickson. We are now in the process of requesting that our clients’ insurer follow the Court’s order. Please pray that the insurer will honor the Court’s decision without any further delay.
Holland v. Burwell – In this case, we are seeking a permanent injunction against the federal government’s HHS Abortion Pill Mandate on behalf of Joseph Holland, Jr. and his car dealership, Holland Chevrolet. Please pray for favor as the Court considers our request for a permanent injunction.
Insight for Living Ministries v. Burwell – We filed a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the HHS Abortion Pill Mandate in federal court in the Eastern District of Texas representing Pastor Chuck Swindoll’s international Bible teaching ministry. In November, the federal district court granted a preliminary injunction prohibiting the federal government’s enforcement of the HHS Abortion Pill Mandate. The government is appealing this decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Please pray as we work on the appeal.
James v. Fox Sports – Please continue to pray for our case representing Craig James against his former employer, Fox Sports, who terminated him because of his views concerning marriage. We specifically ask for prayer as we proceed with a charge of religious discrimination before the Texas Workforce Commission and begin to prepare for a lawsuit.
Chaplain (Captain) Joe Lawhorn v. U.S. Army – We are representing U.S. Army Chaplain Joe Lawhorn, who was punished for discussing his personal faith during suicide prevention training. The U.S. Army has issued Captain Lawhorn a Letter of Concern to be placed in his permanent file. Please pray for favor and wisdom as this matter proceeds through the U.S. Army administrative process.
Matthews v. Kountze ISD – We filed a petition asking the Supreme Court of Texas to protect the religious liberty and free speech rights of the Kountze cheerleaders and guarantee their right to display religious messages on run-through banners at Kountze ISD sporting events. The Supreme Court has requested further briefing. Please pray for favor as the Texas Supreme Court decides whether to accept this case for review.
Chaplain Wes Modder v. U.S. Navy – We are representing U.S. Navy Chaplain Wes Modder whom Navy officials are threatening with a career-ending punishment because of the faith-based views he expressed in private one-on-one counseling sessions with sailors and marines. Navy officials requested that Chaplain Modder be barred from promotion, fired from his job as chaplain, and brought before a military Board of Inquiry, where he could be forced out of the Navy. Modder is only months away from his twentieth anniversary of active military service. Earlier this month, Navy officials declined Chaplain Modder’s request for religious accommodation. Moreover, they have issued a no contact order barring him from ministering to sailors and marines under his care. Please pray for wisdom and favor as we assist Chaplain Modder.
Morgan v. Plano ISD – The “candy cane” case is back in the federal district court (after several trips to the 5th Circuit and U.S. Supreme Court). We are now proceeding with discovery on our claims against the school district for violating the constitutional rights of our clients. Please pray for our attorneys as the work on this case and seek a final resolution in case that has been pending for almost ten years.
Obergefell v. Hodges (Same-Sex Marriage Case at U.S. Supreme Court) – Last week, we filed a friend of the court brief at the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of scholars and religious organizations that support the First Amendment free speech rights of Christian ministers, teachers, and leaders who are compelled by faith and conscience to preach and speak aloud their millennia-old and sincerely held religious view that marriage is the sacred union of one man and one woman. This case will be argued at the U.S. Supreme Court on April 28 and a decision is expected in June. Please pray for the U.S. Supreme Court as it hears arguments in this case and makes its decision.
Prescott v. Oklahoma Capitol Preservation Commission & American Atheists v. Thompson – Along with the Attorney General of Oklahoma, we are defending the Oklahoma Ten Commandments’ display in two separate lawsuits. The ACLU is representing a group of plaintiffs who challenged this monument in state court. In October, the judge ruled that the Ten Commandments monument is constitutional in the state court matter. The ACLU is appealing this ruling to the Oklahoma Supreme Court. The American Atheists had also filed a lawsuit in federal court. However, we filed a motion seeking to dismiss the matter, and the federal judge ruled in our favor for lack of standing. The opponents on that case have now appealed to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals. Please continue to pray for our attorneys as they work on the state court matter that was appealed to the Oklahoma Supreme Court. Please also pray for our attorneys as they prepare for the federal court matter’s appeal to the Tenth Circuit.
Religious Liberty Audits for Churches and Ministries – In 2014, Liberty Institute began a new initiative to protect religious ministries from future legal attacks. We are currently helping over 50 churches and ministries. We just recently released a new web page with information to assist churches in protecting against attacks (click here to learn more about Liberty Institute's Religious Liberty Audits). Please pray for our attorneys as they work with ministry leaders throughout the country to ensure they are adequately protected and prepared.
Roman Catholic Diocese et al. v. City of Austin – At the end of June, we received the Court’s order granting us victory in this case where we represent Austin area pregnancy resource centers challenging the constitutionality of an Austin ordinance that caused them to post a false and misleading sign outside their offices. The court declared the ordinance unconstitutional. The City did not appeal this decision. We are now in the process of seeking the recovery of the attorneys' fees incurred in this case. Please pray for favor as the Court considers our request for the recovery of our attorneys’ fees.
Schneider v. Congregation Toras Chaim – Please continue praying for us as we represent a Jewish Rabbi and his synagogue who were sued by an individual and the neighborhood homeowners’ association who do not want the Jewish congregation to meet for worship in a private home. Last month, the Court ruled in our favor. The other side is now considering an appeal. Please pray for a successful resolution of this matter preserving our clients’ victory.
Trunk v. U.S. and Mt. Soledad Memorial Association – Our case defending the constitutionality of the historic Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial is now again before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Please pray for our attorneys as they work on this case and the judges of the Ninth Circuit as they consider our appeal.
Tutka v. Phillipsburg (NJ) School District – In December, we received a Final Determination letter from the EEOC stating that our client, Walt Tutka, was indeed discriminated against by his former employer, a school district in New Jersey. The school district fired Mr. Tutka, a teacher, for handing a student a Bible, who had requested it. Praise God for the victory in that the EEOC found the matter in favor of our client. Please now pray for final resolution of this matter as the EEOC seeks to reach a conciliation agreement with the school district on behalf of Mr. Tutka.
Walsh v. State of Georgia – We filed a charge of discrimination with the EEOC on behalf of Dr. Eric Walsh against his former employer, the State of Georgia Department of Public Health, who unlawfully terminated him because of his religious beliefs. Please pray for favor with the EEOC as they investigate this claim.
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