CommunityPam's House Blend

Jeebus-loving SC town must cough up $65K for Wiccan priestess

Darla Kaye Wynne. Photo: Alternative Religions Educational Network.

Oops, those activist judges…tiny Great Falls, SC obviously didn’t think it was going to lose the lawsuit brought by Wiccan priestess Darla Wynn. She sued the town in 2001, saying Great Falls violated the church-state separation by using the name Jesus Christ in prayers because it promoted one religion over another. Now, they’ve lost on appeal and have to pay up. And it looks like the bible beaters are willing to pass the plate around.

…it is unclear where the town would get the cash. The money is about 7 percent of the town’s annual $870,000 budget. “In government work, that’s a big chunk,” town attorney Michael Hemlepp said. “It’ll be an enormous undertaking for us.”

The Rev. Michael Sollers, pastor of Evangel Temple Assembly of God, said most of the town supported the council’s decision to keep fighting the case and would be willing to help pay the legal fees. “I am sure the churches would do whatever humanly possible to help them,” Sollers said.

Wynne’s lawyer, Herbert Buhl of Columbia, said lawyers had incurred only about $18,000 in expenses before the town decided to appeal.

“We spent two years in extra litigation while they went to the U.S. Supreme Court, and I think the case was clear from the beginning,” Buhl said. “When there’s not a lot of money to go around, it should be used wisely.”

Thanks to House Blender Cat for the pointer.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding