Board asked to reconsider removing Lord's Prayer from East Liver - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Board asked to reconsider removing Lord's Prayer from East Liverpool graduation

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EAST LIVERPOOL, Ohio -

A decision by the East Liverpool School District to remove the Lord's Prayer from their graduation ceremony has sparked an emotional plea from the choir director.

"I really don't want to get upset so forgive me for getting emotional," said Lisa Ensinger as she addressed the East Liverpool Board of Education on Monday night.

Ensinger has not only been the high school choir director for 18 years but, is also a graduate of the district and sang the Lord's Prayer at her own graduation.

"As a person of faith it means a great deal to me as you know, but as an educator I see this as an opening to a very broad door that can cause great detriment to our music education program," said Ensinger.

As a music educator she says she knows what is allowed and what it not. She says the rules are, if a piece of music has an educational value, it's permitted. So, she questions if the Lord's Prayer is not permitted, what other pieces would not be permitted?

"Mozart... his Requiem Mass, would no longer be allowed. Handel's Messiah would no longer be allowed. All of the music of the Medieval period would never be allowed," said Ensinger.

The board president says he made the decision to remove the song from the graduation ceremony after a parent complained and the district received a letter from The Freedom From Religion Foundation.

"When I was first on this board I expressed a concern about us singing. The comment made was that 'we know we are breaking the law, we will do it until we get caught.' Well, ladies and gentlemen we got caught," said Board President Larry Walton.

He emphasizes that his decision is not based on his own views but, the views of the Supreme Court.

"I'm sorry this happened but, it's a war we cant win," said Walton.

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