School board settles lawsuit over Christian prayers

Posted: Friday, May 14, 2004

SARASOTA, Fla. (AP) The Manatee County School Board has settled a federal lawsuit against its practice of saying Christian prayers before meetings.

The agreement allows the board to open meetings with a nonsectarian invocation. A court must approve the settlement.

Steven and Carol Rosenauer, who are Jewish, sued the School Board in federal court in February over what they described as the persistent use of Christian prayers at board meetings, in violation of the district's own policy and the U.S. Constitution.

The couple has spent nearly a year fighting to stop a decades-old practice of opening meetings with the Lord's Prayer. Violation of the settlement could leave the board in contempt of court.

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