Ken Paxton, the Republican attorney general of Texas, is telling Austin school authorities that barring a fundamentalist church from holding weekend services in the district’s Performing Arts Center would run afoul of the Texas Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The district had announced that it was contemplating cutting back on outside groups using their facilities so as to be readily available for student activities.
The Celebration Church of Georgetown is part of a church-planting movement whereby congregations secure free or low-cost space in public schools for their weekly worship services to avoid investing in bricks-and-mortar churches. LGBTQ and civil liberties groups objected to the rental by Celebration, the Austin-American Statesman reported.
The movement has been successful in securing such space all over the New York City, despite our human rights law that bars discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.