One of the after-school programs operating at Point Defiance Elementary School in Tacoma, Washington is a Satan Club for kids. Needless to say, many parents and community members are not happy. A local priest calls it an attack on God, which ultimately undermines moral values. A spokesperson for the Satanic Temple of Seattle claims there is nothing to worry about. Despite the likelihood of facing backlash from Christians, the school is worried about being sued by the ACLU for discrimination for not allowing the satanic organization the right to gather.

Members from the Temple arrived at the school on Wednesday as a group of Tacoma Catholics collected on a nearby street corner to pray. Temple leader Lilith Starr, who said she was concerned folks would be scared away, later called the premiere meeting of 11 adults and nine students, a success. Temple members explained their interpretation of Satanism to parents as not believing in old slew foot in a literal sense, but as a symbol which stands against arbitrary authority. There is no disputing in the Bible that Satan is against authority, but he is acknowledged as being real.

Religious freedoms taking a back seat

Two of the students in attendance identified themselves as Christians and one parent signed a permission slip for their child to join and attend the monthly program. Point Defiance Elementary School also has a national after-school Christian program called the Good News Club, which meets on Tuesdays. Tacoma Public Schools’ decision to include the Satan Club in their after-school program was met with protest back in August.

However, a U.S. Supreme Court ruling compels the schools to allow facility rentals for all interest groups.

Plans for widespread infiltration

The Satanic Temple’s national organization is based in Salem, Massachusetts, a city known for its 17th century witch trials. The group is on a mission to launch these after-school programs nationwide. Co-founder Doug Mesner feels it is critical for children to have a choice in what to believe.

Leaders from sects in Arizona, Boston, New York and Utah met in Salem on July 10th to discuss strategies. Those located in Detroit, Florida, Minneapolis, New Orleans, Pittsburgh and San Jose joined the discussion online.

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