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AHeneen
04-26-2009, 05:41 PM
Special offering -- sex -- puts church at risk
Sermons may translate into eviction notice from school

BY RICK NEALE FLORIDA TODAY APRIL 25, 2009
Link (http://www.floridatoday.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2009904250314)

MELBOURNE -- Sermons about sex -- and advertisements depicting sockless feet snuggling between bedsheets -- have landed a church in hot water with Brevard Public Schools officials.

The school district's risk-management department has threatened to boot New Hope Church out of Sherwood Elementary, its new home for Sunday services.

Why? A worship series titled "Great Sex for You."

Last week, church leaders mailed 25,000 colorful fliers to Melbourne households, asking residents "Is Your Sex Life A Bore?" and inviting them to go to the school to "learn how to have the Great Sex that God created you to enjoy!"

The three-week program kicked off Sunday morning inside the school auditorium. Seated on stage in black jeans and an untucked collared shirt, Bible in hand, Pastor Bruce Cadle said the Christian church has been "shamefully silent" on the typically taboo topic.

"Sex between married believers is a holy activity. It's not a dirty activity. It's not a shameful activity," Cadle preached. "It's a holy activity. And the Bible is so clear about this. But it's still hard for us to get it."

But Mark Langdorf, the school district's director of risk management, said the "Great Sex for You" mailers generated complaints. He described the controversy as "obnoxious and inimical to the best interests of the school board."

"We believe the type of advertising used is not appropriate for students to read in any elementary school," Langdorf said. "If it is inappropriate for the students, then it should not be used to advertise any event held at an elementary school in Brevard County."

Cadle said Langdorf threatened to terminate the church's lease agreement. The church rents the auditorium and one classroom for $606 each Sunday, records show.

However, Langdorf said the contract remains under review.

"At present, no decision has been made as to the church's future use of Sherwood Elementary School," Langdorf said. "The question as to the revocation of use is presently under consideration."

[snip]

Formerly operated as Sherwood Park Baptist Church, this aging yellow structure's sanctuary can accommodate only 160 people, Cadle said.

Facing a capacity crunch, the ministry conducted its first Sunday service at Sherwood Elementary on March 29. Two weeks later, an Easter service drew 426 worshippers.

Last week, church leaders mailed the "Great Sex for You" fliers to residents within a 3-mile radius. These fliers also were distributed in FLORIDA TODAY as advertising inserts.

Sherwood Elementary personnel received six complaints, Langdorf said -- including a church member who apologized. The district office received one complaint.

Cadle said his church received one phone complaint, one in-person complaint and three online complaints.

But 23 newcomers attended Sunday's service, he wrote on his blog.

[snip]

noonwitch
04-27-2009, 09:40 AM
If it happens on Sunday, when there is no school in session, I don't see the problem. Unless the adult class is leaving their lessons up on the chalkboard and forgetting to erase them.

My high school leased out to a church on Sundays-it was a good deal for the district. We'd come in on Mondays to find Sunday School lessons written on the chalkboards. None of them were about sex, however.

Rockntractor
04-27-2009, 10:18 AM
This could give a new meaning to "will the congregation please rise" !

FlaGator
04-27-2009, 11:00 AM
I've seen some examples of this teaching and it really isn't that big of a deal. It mainly focuses on how sex within the limits set by scripture is a beautiful God given gift meant to me enjoyed and not looked upon as sinful. It's to counter act some of the old school philosophy that misinterpreted scripture and made sex outside of the need for procreation a sin. At any rate some people are making entirely too big of a deal of this.