Ben Carson Faces Lawsuit Over White House Bible Study

faith
January 23, 2018Jan 23, 2018

A weekly Bible study attended by members of President Trump's Cabinet is under attack by prominent atheist groups, the Freedom From Religion Foundation and Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. 

These groups are filing a lawsuit against the Department of Housing and Urban Development, led by Secretary Ben Carson. The group has also issued a request to agencies led by Cabinet secretaries who attend this Bible study in order to ensure that the staffers don't feel "coerced into organizing or even participating in the religious event." 

CBN News makes clear that it is unlikely that anybody feels forced into attending the Bible studies since staffers aren't invited to this secretaries-only Bible study. 

In July, it was revealed that Cabinet secretaries meet every week to study the Bible and pray together. According to CBN News, Energy Secretary Rick Perry, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, HUD Secretary Ben Carson, Agriculture Secretary Sunny Perdue, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and CIA Director Mike Pompeo are just a few of the regulars.

CBN News has claimed that Trump's cabinet is one of the most evangelical in modern history and filled with men and women "who don't mince words when it comes to where they stand on God and the Bible."

Since this news broke, the leader of this Bible study, Ralph Drollinger, has faced many personal attacks. This is, of course, despite the fact that he has been organizing Bible studies for members of the House of Representatives and US Senate for many years. And this is also despite the fact that Bible studies can be found in the majority of state capitols throughout the country, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the Senate.

The Freedom From Religion Foundation claims that these Bible studies are very "secretive." Drolling has defended the Bible studies by saying that copies of everything they read and talk about can be found online. 

"Rather than sue, the FFRF can simply go to www.capmin.org and check out copies of the Bible studies I write and teach the Cabinet, Senate and House members every week. There's nothing secret to this – and all related Bible study expenses are paid by Capitol Ministries, a 501(c)3 organization."

The officials currently involved in this White House Bible Study have long been on the FFRF's radar. In fact, the group rejected many of their confirmations due to their "inability to keep their personal religion separate from their public office." 

Earlier this month, the FFRF has called for an end to prayer in the military. According to the American Atheist website, "American Atheists" and the "Freedom From Religion Foundation" have demanded an end to "coerced" prayer in the military. 

The groups wrote to Secretary of Defense James Mattis to complain that military members have been "forced" into religious observances while attending training. The primary problem, claims these groups, is that military trainers have included prayer in graduation ceremonies throughout the nation.

In other words, according to these atheist groups, it is "coercion" to simply be in a room of people respectfully praying, while it is perfectly acceptable to forcibly demand those with religious faith be outright banned from public prayer.

Oddly, the atheist groups complain that voluntary worship services on Sunday have indirectly been a means of discrimination against non-Christians because those who don't go to church have to do other "tasks" during this hour-long period.

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