Anger continues over bible study ban in Housing Authority apartment buildings - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Jason Miles

Anger continues over bible study ban in Housing Authority apartment buildings

Action News 5 got a lot of e-mail from viewers concerned about the Memphis Housing Authority's decision to ban bible study in recreation rooms of its apartment buildings, a decision federal housing officials said Thursday was not necessary.

And they not the only ones speaking out about it.

The Memphis Housing Authority cites "separation of church and state" for banning the bible studies, a Sunday morning ritual Pearlie Jenkins led for nearly a year.

Thursday, an official at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development said Jenkins never needed to be thrown out in the first place.

Yvonne Leander said, "We don't consider that to be a conflict of church and state.”

Still, HUD gives local housing authorities the power to make such decisions.

Memphis City Council member Barbara Swearengen Ware disagreed with the decision to ban bible study.

"To deny people that want the ability to serve the Lord in their own way is not what this city is about,” she said

Ware heads up the council's public housing committee, and thinks the Housing Authority should reconsider.

Something that might help avoid a court battle Jenkins, while continuing to provide a service to public housing tenants interested in receiving it.

Officials at the Memphis Housing Authority did not return calls from Action News 5 on Thursday.


Click here to send an email to Jason Miles.
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