Indiana School District Sued Over Nativity Scene in Annual Christmas Pageant

Students perform the Nativity scene at Concord High School's 2014 Christmas Spectacular. (PHOTO CREDIT: YouTube)
Students perform the Nativity scene at Concord High School’s 2014 Christmas Spectacular. (PHOTO CREDIT: YouTube)

A father and high school student have filed a complaint against their Indiana school district over a 20-minute live Nativity scene that’s a long-standing part of the public school’s yearly Christmas pageant.

According to the Elkhart Truth, the unnamed parent-child and the Freedom From Religious Foundation are suing Concord Community Schools in federal court because the scene featured at Concord High School’s Christmas Spectacular violates the separation of church and state. The American Civil Liberties Union is also helping to represent the case.

They claim the Nativity scene as part of the Christmas production “is coercive, represents an endorsement of religion… has no secular purpose and has the principal purpose and eggiest of advancing religion,” and are asking for the scene to be omitted from the performance at the school moving forward.

“While the holiday songs chosen for the Christmas Spectacular vary somewhat each year, the Christmas Spectacular always closes with an approximately 20-minute live depiction—also by students of the High School—of the story of the birth of Jesus,” the case explains.

Jack Doe, how the unnamed high schooler is being referred to in the case, is an active member in Concord’s music program, and will perform in the 2015 Christmas Spectacular, according to the suit. His participation includes performing “one or more of the religious hymns that are part of the live Nativity Scene and the telling of the story of the birth of Jesus,” despite his objection to its telling.

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SOURCE: USA Today, Lindsay Deutsch