“Joy to the World” is not a form of bullying.
That’s the message from a religious advocacy group offering to help a Montana school district facing a possible lawsuit for including religious Christmas carols in a school concert.
“For them to include traditional religious Christmas carols is perfectly constitutional,” said Matt Sharp, an attorney with Alliance Defending Freedom. “The courts have clearly held that it’s constitutional for schools to include traditional religious carols as part of a secular educational music program.”
The ADF said they sent a letter to the Missoula, Mont. School district advising them of their rights under the law and offered to give them legal support in the event of a lawsuit.
A group of parents lodged a complaint about a Christmas concert at Chief Charlo Elementary School. They alleged songs like “Joy to the World” and “Good Christian Men Rejoice” are forms of bullying.
“Bullying is such a hot topic, yet that seems to be what is occurring here,” the parents wrote in a letter obtained by The Missoulian. “When the children are singing about the lord and savior Jesus Christ – public school is not the place.”
Sharp said they are seeing a national effort to “remove any celebrations of Christmas.”
“It gives students a truncated view of American history and culture if we have to censor and remove anything that has religious origin or content,” he said. “So much of it is based on our nation’s Christian heritage and traditions.”