Appeals court revives suit challenging school prayer

RICHMOND, Va. – A federal appeals court has revived a South Carolina family's attempt to stop a public school from holding graduation ceremonies at a religious venue and including prayer in the program, according to a report by The Associated Press.

Last year, the American Humanist Association and an unnamed Greenville County family filed a federal lawsuit seeking to stop Mountain View Elementary, in Taylors, from holding future graduation ceremonies at North Greenville University, which is affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention.

The lawsuit, which was filed in response to a graduation ceremony Mountain View held in May 2013 in Turner Chapel on the university's campus, also seeks to stop school-sponsored prayers at future events.

In December 2013, U.S. District Judge G. Ross Anderson Jr. in Greenville denied the injunction, but a three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond said Friday that Anderson erred because he provided no legal rationale for his decision, The Associated Press reports.

The court vacated the decision and ordered reconsideration by a different district judge.