Hundreds gather to learn about and defend students' rights to live out their faith on campus
BOSSIER CITY, LA (KSLA) - Connected through faith and gathered in worship, hundreds came together Sunday in Bossier City to learn about their religious liberties.
"In America, there's (sic) rights that guarantee you can live out your faith in a public way," Dr. Brad Jurkovich said.
The pastor of First Bossier in Bossier City was among those drawn to the freedom summit at Bossier Parish Community College.
"In our society, we need to be tolerant of people who have faith and those who don't have faith."
The overarching theme was that students have the constitutional right to live out their faith on campus.
Bossier and Webster school districts are the targets of lawsuits alleging that their educators unconstitutionally promote Christianity in their classrooms.
"As students, we have the power to speak about what matters to us," Nathan Coker said.
The Airline High junior said that he lives out his faith every day and that he is prepared to his and his peers' faith.
"They have rights as students. And they can't be shut down by any government agency or any ACLU or anything."
A universal understanding of religious freedoms is beneficial for people of all beliefs, Jurkovich said.
"Understanding religious liberty is beneficial not for just the teenager who has faith, but for those that don't so they know 'You know what? I might not agree with them, but they certainly have the right to express their faith, talk about their faith'."
Johnson gave a crash course on religious liberties.
"The law says that any religious expression that's student-led and student-initiated is perfectly covered by the Constitution."
The conversation highlights the freedoms Americans should not take for granted, the congressman added.
"We're not for forcing faith on anyone. That's not what we're about," Johnson said.
"We want a free marketplace of ideas; and we believe that the Christian truth can prevail.
"That's the beauty of free speech in America is that everyone gets to have voice."
Also joining students, parents and School Board members at the summit was Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry.
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