That is exactly what a local pastor and his wife are being told by county government bureaucrats that they must do if they wish to continue to host Bible studies in their own home, which are usually attended by fifteen people or so.
Of course, this is ridiculous on its face, and obviously a case of a government-schooled, over-zealous bureaucrat who is more than a little ignorant of the concept of private property rights. Then again, this could be something more, based on the questions posed to the homeowner by the government bureaucrats (bolds are mine):
Attorney Dean Broyles of The Western Center For Law & Policy was shocked with what happened to the pastor and his wife.First of all, I find the inquisitorial nature of these questions to be well out of bounds, and not a little disturbing, particularly because they are being asked by a government employee. It almost seems as if the government was zeroing in on them because they happened to be Christian.
Broyles said, "The county asked, 'Do you have a regular meeting in your home?' She said, 'Yes.' 'Do you say amen?' 'Yes.' 'Do you pray?' 'Yes.' 'Do you say praise the Lord?' 'Yes.'"
What business is it of the government's what is said by those attending a gathering in a private home? Do they ask similar questions to other residents who regularly have people over for a BBQ? A football game?
More to the point, would the government be this nosy if this were a Muslim gathering?
Somehow I doubt it.
The couple has sent a letter to the county demanding they back off, as this is a clear violation of their 1st Amendment rights as they relate to religious freedom.
If you ask me, that is just for starters, as there are property rights and other freedom-related issues in play here, as well. The couple has said that if the county continues to pursue this course of action, they will consider a federal lawsuit.
Good for them.
You can read the entire 10News.com story here.