The Honorable Tom Wolf and Senate President John Fetterman
Office of the Governor
508 Main Capitol Building
Harrisburg, PA 17120
Re: Unconstitutional use of taxpayer dollars to fund churches
Dear Governor Tom Wolf and Senate President Fetterman,
As members of the Pittsburgh Freethought Community, with over 2,700 stakeholders, we are concerned about the unconstitutional use of $7 million dollars in Commonwealth funds allocated to two Baptist churches.
Under the budget provisions of SB0905 PN1754, Grace Baptist Church of Germantown is set to get $2 million while Bible Way Baptist Church in West Philadelphia is slated to get $5 million.
● (Item E) Acquisition, infrastructure, renovations, rehabilitation, construction
and other related costs for Grace Baptist Church in the Germantown
neighborhood of Philadelphia. Project Allocation $2,000,00
● (Item BBB) Acquisition, construction, infrastructure and other related costs
for the Bible Way Baptist Church Community Revitalization Complex
Project Allocation $5,000,000
Yet, Article 1, Section 3 of the Pennsylvania Constitution clearly guarantees no one “can of right be compelled to attend, erect or support any place of worship, or to maintain any ministry against his consent.”
The funds allocated to these two projects are unconstitutional and must be withdrawn from further consideration. We thank you for attending to this matter and for reserving Commonwealth funding for projects that all Pennsylvanians, regardless of race, religion, gender or marital status, can take advantage of without discrimination.
Dana Morganroth Marie Schaub
Pittsburgh Freethought Community Pittsburgh Freethought Community
President Public Policy Participation Committee Chair