Many will remember the case of high school football coach Joe Kennedy.
Coach Kennedy was fired back in 2015 from Bremerton (Wash.) High School for praying silently on the 50-yard line after games. The coach never forced anyone to join him. He didn’t even pray out loud.
And for that, he was dismissed from his job.
Coach Kennedy will finally have his day in court on Monday. Our friends at First Liberty will be representing him, and I’m confident they’ll do a great job. But he needs our prayers, and I hope everyone in our audience will commit to praying for him.
To help with the effort, we’ve launched a social media campaign along with our friends at the Family Policy Alliance. It’s called Pray 50. Every day is a good day to pray, but we’re asking folks to set aside some time this Sunday to prayer for Coach Kennedy, his legal team and the nine justices on the Supreme Court.
If possible, find a school’s 50-yard line where you can gather with family, friends, or members of your church or school. If that’s not possible, please pray wherever you are on Sunday. Take a picture of your group and use the hashtag #Pray50. We hope your boldness will help encourage others to pray for the coach, too.
It’s absurd to think that, in a sport where concussions and injuries regularly happen, the school district is concerned about a man who silently prays and thanks God for his team and the safety of players.
Let’s be reasonable. We cannot simply ignore the assertion in our Declaration of Independence that God has given us inalienable rights like the freedoms of speech and religion – and that it is the duty of government to “secure” those rights.
As a former teenage boy who was once helped by a man in the mold of Kennedy, I know how important men like him are. Now that I’m a dad, I would love for my two sons to have had coaches and teachers like him – people who live out the principles of honor, hard work, conviction and compassion. These are things we can all agree are right and good.
In the end, this really isn’t just about Coach Joe Kennedy. This about much more than one man’s right to pray. What’s at stake is everyone’s religious freedom.