After wrestling with district leaders for a few weeks, a local satanic group just got the go-ahead to hold an after-school program at Sacramento Elementary School in the Parkrose School District.
Organizers say their goal isn’t to encourage devil worship, but to offer children an alternative to a Christian group that also meets there.
Heidi-Friesen-Wutzke isn’t a fan of any religion around public schools. But hearing that a satanic group will be meeting at her son’s school is a little extra unsettling.
“I don’t know what that group would promote so that’s a little concerning,” said Friesen-Wutzke. “But I know on the other hand, people are concerned about the Christian group that meets here as well.”
The group is being organized by Finn Rezz with Satanic Portland, a group that is not about devil worship, but he says, the separation of church and state.
“We believe that after school religious programs don’t belong in the school system,” said Rezz.
That is exactly why Rezz picked Sacramento Elementary. It’s where the Good News Club meets, an after school program sponsored by the Child Evangelism Fellowship.
Fox 12 spoke to one its directors in Missouri by phone.
“They’re doing it almost as a publicity stunt, I believe,” said John Luck.
After a Supreme Court ruling, Good News Clubs have been in public school buildings for years.
Children must get a signed permission slip from a parent to attend, the same as the satanic club. But Luck doesn’t think they’ll get much, if any, support.
“They have the right to be there just as we do and you don’t see us opposing them. They are the ones opposing and bullying the Good News Club, not vice versa.”
But Rezz says they will be teaching critical thinking and ways to challenge authority and he hopes that families are, at least, curious.
“We, in order to make and answer to that, have to be making ourselves available in the same way," Rezz said, referring to Christian groups. “But we hope that someday a program like ours won’t be necessary.”
The superintendent for Parkrose Schools District could not be reached for comment Tuesday.
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