Tri-State briefs

August 19, 2012

Atheist groups protest prayers at Pa. meetings

GREENCASTLE, Pa. (AP) — Two atheists groups have challenged a Franklin County school board’s practice of saying prayers before beginning meetings.

WHTM-TV reported that the push in Franklin County comes from Pennsylvania Non-Believers and American Atheists Inc.

Shortly after the Greencastle-Antrim School Board opened a meeting with the Lord’s Prayer on Thursday, two people spoke against the practice.

Carl Silverman of PA Non-Believers called it “a clear constitutional violation” and threatened legal action. He said he has gotten complaints from district residents who were too afraid to come forward.

Greencastle-Antrim Superintendent Greg Hoover said he has attended board meetings for a quarter of a century and the meetings always started with the Lord’s Prayer. “No one’s ever said a word,” he said.

Board members declined comment.

Democratic Committee to hold open house

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. — The Franklin County Democratic Committee will hold an ice cream open house Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at its new headquarters at 256 S Main St. A formal ribbon cutting will be at 1 p.m.

Candidates for state offices will be on hand. In addition, there will be T-shirts, bumper stickers, and other free and for-sale campaign material available. Members of the Obama For America committee also will be present.

Stephen Harris, chairman of the Franklin County Democratic Committee, said in a news release that the Chambersurg office gives the county’s Democrats “a centralized location to bring together our diverse community to focus our efforts on sharing our Democratic principles and electing the 2012 Democratic candidates.”

He said the new headquarters will serve as the focal point for the efforts of the Chambersburg Democratic Committee, the Greencastle-Antrim Democratic Committee and the Waynesboro Democratic Committee.

Scheduled to appear Saturday are Karen Ramsberg, independent candidate for the 9th District U.S. House seat against U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster; Susan Spicka, candidate for 89th District state House seat against Rep. Rob Kauffman; and Bruce Neylon, candidate for the 33rd District state Senate seat against state Sen. Rich Alloway.

For more information, call 717-496-8453.

Historic Christ Reformed Church to have guest speaker


SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va. — Historic Christ Reformed Church at 304 E. German St. in Shepherdstown will host Emma Kathleen “Katie” Morgan as its guest preacher Sunday at the 11 a.m. service.

This will be the first opportunity to hear Morgan preach locally following her recent graduation from the Grand Rapids (Mich.) Theological Seminary, where she earned a Master of Divinity.

A native of Shepherdstown, Morgan is the daughter of D.L. and Tara Morgan of Shepherdstown, and the granddaughter of Mary Ann Morgan, organist and director of music at Christ Church.

 Christ Reformed Church, founded in 1747, is a congregation of German Reformed heritage within the United Church of Christ. The service will be followed by a covered-dish luncheon, to which all are invited.

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