Quantcast

Church and State - KOAM TV 7

Church and State

Updated:

The "Supreme Court," today, issued a ruling that some say pushes the boundaries of "separation of church and state". It's a case that originated in Missouri.

The controversy started in Columbia, Missouri -- at the Trinity Lutheran Church.

In 2012, they applied for a grant from the state to resurface their daycare playground through the state's recycled tire program.

It ranked fifth out of 44 submissions.

But the state said "no", citing a provision in the Missouri constitution that bars state funding for religious entities.

Pastor Gregory Mech with Immanuel Lutheran Church in Joplin says he's never run into issues with state funding, because they've elected not to go to the state.

Mech: "For the most part we've gone to private institutions or, non-for-profits, when we've been looking for grants."

Mech says the government did help after the Joplin tornado..

Mech: "We were very pleasantly surprised at the, willingness of the federal government to help restore the property and especially our schoolyard."

That's because -- according to FEMA -- churches that provide community services, such as education and day care, can be eligible for federal and state grants for disaster relief.

Which comes from taxpayer money.

And taxpayer money is at the basis of the argument.

At what point can funding be denied based simply on the fact that it's a church.

The Supreme Court ruled that churches have the same right as other charitable groups to seek state money for new playground surfaces and other non-religious needs.

The ACLU of Missouri issued a statement -- saying in part: "..today's decision is disappointing because religious freedom should protect unwilling taxpayers from funding church property, not force them to foot the bill."

Despite opposition to the ruling, Reverend Mech says it shouldn't matter what group receives the funding so long as it's going to protect children."

Mech: "I do believe that if activities are being done in a responsible way and if they benefit the general populous, then it shouldn't matter quite as much who it is that's providing those beneficial activities."

     Back in April, Governor Eric Greitens instructed the "Department of Natural Resources" to allow such organizations to apply for and receive DNR grants.

MORE TOP NEWS

Chris Warner
Reporter

A Joplin native, Chris first started in broadcasting at age 16 at KSNF-TV in 2004..

Chris joined the KOAM team in 2017 as an Associate Producer. In April, he moved into a full-time reporter position. He spent time from 2008 to 2016 in various retail roles around the region before returning to his passion at KOAM. Chris is excited to continue telling the stories of the four states. Chris and his wife Amber live in Joplin and have three amazing children.

Follow Chris:
On Facebook
On Twitter

Contact Chris:
417.624.0233 or 620.231.0400
cwarner@koamtv.com

  • Chris WarnerMore>>

  • One Carthage Neighborhood Makes Big Plans For Maple Leaf

    One Carthage Neighborhood Makes Big Plans For Maple Leaf

    Friday, October 19 2018 10:00 PM EDT2018-10-20 02:00:13 GMT

        It's that time of year again, the fall smells, pumpkin spice everything, and most importantly, the annual Maple Leaf Parade in Carthage and for as much preparation that the city puts in for the big event, there's one neighborhood that puts in even more, for their friends, family, and in between.  Brandi Ensor and her friends put the final touches on the outdoor decorations along Grand Avenue.

    More >>

        It's that time of year again, the fall smells, pumpkin spice everything, and most importantly, the annual Maple Leaf Parade in Carthage and for as much preparation that the city puts in for the big event, there's one neighborhood that puts in even more, for their friends, family, and in between.  Brandi Ensor and her friends put the final touches on the outdoor decorations along Grand Avenue.

    More >>
  • Update On Block 22 Restaurants

    Update On Block 22 Restaurants

    Thursday, October 18 2018 10:03 PM EDT2018-10-19 02:03:24 GMT

        The long awaited Block22 in Pittsburg opened to students recently to allow them to move in to the newly created lofts.     However, restaurants were expected to be opened by now, but, they're not, leaving some wondering what's going on.   When you look at the Block22 restaurant space, there's not much to look at.  Even though, originally, residents were told, they'd be ready by now.

    More >>

        The long awaited Block22 in Pittsburg opened to students recently to allow them to move in to the newly created lofts.     However, restaurants were expected to be opened by now, but, they're not, leaving some wondering what's going on.   When you look at the Block22 restaurant space, there's not much to look at.  Even though, originally, residents were told, they'd be ready by now.

    More >>
  • Public Safety Pay, "Panhandler Ordinance" On Joplin City Council Agenda

    Public Safety Pay, "Panhandler Ordinance" On Joplin City Council Agenda

    Monday, October 15 2018 10:21 PM EDT2018-10-16 02:21:47 GMT
        The Joplin City Council facing a packed agenda at tonight's meeting, on that list, two major items an increase for public safety employees, and a reconsideration on the so-called "panhandling ordinance" passed earlier this year.  Since the start of this year the salary issues of police and fire personnel has been on the center stage for the city.     That's caused some council meetings to become heated, and a number of residents vo...More >>
        The Joplin City Council facing a packed agenda at tonight's meeting, on that list, two major items an increase for public safety employees, and a reconsideration on the so-called "panhandling ordinance" passed earlier this year.  Since the start of this year the salary issues of police and fire personnel has been on the center stage for the city.     That's caused some council meetings to become heated, and a number of residents vo...More >>
Powered by Frankly

KOAM - Licensed to Pittsburg, Kansas
Send tips, ideas and press releases to: tips@koamtv.com
Send newsroom questions or comments to: comments@koamtv.com
Phone: (417) 624-0233 or (620) 231-0400
Web comments or questions: webmaster@koamtv.com
Newsroom Fax: (417) 624-3158

Powered by Frankly, Inc. All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 KOAM. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.