Commentary: U.S. Supreme Court set to rule on case involving LCMS congregation

Comments (6)
  1. Barry Harris says:

    Our Lutheran School has special Ed. teachers come to our school provided by the state. It seems like that’s a lot closer to religion in a parochial school than rubber on the playground and It also seems like child safety should be important and available to all children wherever they are, it has nothing to do with religion.

  2. Mike Fogarty says:

    ” Supreme Court may be poised to offer a ruling protecting religious nonprofits from such heavy-handed hostility.” Really?

    So with limited funds the state should give to those that do not pay property taxes above those who do? The state should help public properties before private profit/nonprofit properties. Maybe if those who do not pay property tax use some of those funds saved to provide playground materials more children would be protected.

    Using fear such as the term “heavy-handed hostility” pits the church against government which is not the case.

    Just like other cases the church has said they won on religious grounds by hurting a church member, on questionable reasons in my opinion. Did we hurt one of our own calling it biblical or was the reason funds?

    I maybe out of touch but I feel the need to question the leadership.

    1. LCMS Church Information Center says:

      Thank you for your comment.

      The state actually invited nonprofits to apply for the grants from the Playground Scrap Tire Surface Materials Grant Program that was administered by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources (DNR). The grant program recycles scrap tires into rubber playground surfaces in an attempt to reduce the amount of tires in landfills and to foster children’s safety. After listing Trinity among the top applicants, the Missouri DNR later decided Trinity’s learning center was ineligible for the program — a determination made solely on an interpretation of a state-constitution provision prohibiting government aid to religion.

      Also, the LCMS is not a party to the litigation. However, last year, the Synod participated in an amicus brief for the case. Amicus briefs provide pertinent information to the court regarding a case and alert the court to the ways in which the case may affect people outside of the two parties involved. The complete amicus brief is available for download at

  3. The Rev. BT Ball says:

    One thing I’ve been wondering seeing all the news about this case over the last few weeks…did they ever get the playground fixed?

    1. LCMS Church Information Center says:

      The playground didn’t need to be fixed, as it was surfaced with pea gravel. The state offered the grant program to nonprofit organizations to use recycled scrap tires for rubber playground surfaces in an attempt to reduce the amount of tires in landfills and to foster children’s safety.

      1. The Rev. BT Ball says:

        Thanks for the response. I understand the specifics of the case, so perhaps the word “fixed” wasn’t helpful. My question is did the congregation replace the pea gravel or not?