School bells give way to church bells in the Bronx

Many worshippers are flocking to schools for Sunday prayer since a federal district court injunction granting churches access to the buildings was issued.

Some critics say using schools as a place of worship is violating the separation of church and state.

Robert Hall, co-pastor of one of the congregations using school space, disagrees. ?It?s a matter of freedom of speech and the school should not discriminate because of our particular point of view,? he says.

Hall?s congregation, the Bronx Household of Faith, has made P.S. 15 its place of worship on Sundays. For years the congregation met at houses along Anderson Avenue and has met at the school since 2003.

The Bronx Household of Faith is in the process of constructing its own worship space, but a change in contractors and lack of funding has put the project on hold. Nevertheless worshippers are hoping to move into their new building by the end of next year.

The Department of Education says because of the permanent injunction, it will grant permits to churches that want to use school buildings for worship space.

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