Thursday, August 18, 2016

Joplin High School football seniors attend retreat at Christian-based facility

At the same time that the Joplin R-8 School District is enmeshed in a federal lawsuit concerning a field trip to Victory Ministries and Sports Complex, Joplin High School football team members attended a "senior retreat" at a Quapaw, Oklahoma, facility, which is advertised as "North America's leader in Christian camps."

On the first paragraph of its homepage, Cave Springs Sky Ranch is described in this fashion:

Located in a convenient four-state area, Sky Ranch Cave Springs provides an environment that enables guests to focus on God while enjoying the natural beauty around them.

Sky Ranch Cave Springs is described as being "nondenominational" on its website and promotes itself as being available for many events that are not connected to religion, such as youth retreats, staff retreats, and corporate meetings.

The participant agreement Sky Ranch asks those coming to the facility to sign spells out the purpose of the facility clearly:

Acknowledgement of Sky Ranch Purpose.

 Participant acknowledges and understands that Sky Ranch is organized and operated exclusively for Christian purposes. 

We treat all guests with respect and dignity, regardless of their religion or beliefs and we request our guests respect our beliefs as stated in the Sky Ranch doctrinal statement while on Sky Ranch property or participating in Sky Ranch activities. 

Participants who engage in disrespectful or harmful behavior or who refuse to abide by the instructions provided by Sky Ranch staff, while on Sky Ranch property or participating in Sky Ranch activities are subject to removal from the property or program at Sky Ranch’s discretion.

The Joplin High School football team Facebook page shows that the retreat was held August 9. Ir had originally been scheduled for August 6, but was postponed due to weather.

Three items concerning the senior retreat are included in the list of bills the Joplin R-8 Board of Education will review at its Tuesday meeting.

The bills, all of which are included in the category "supplies," are for $862.50, $916.16, and a deposit of $62.50 for a total of $1,841.16.

The documentation, which is included in the Board packet for this month, does not indicate whether this is one of those items that crops up occasionally in which the district pays the cost, but is reimbursed by an outside entity, such as the Joplin Athletic Booster Club.

The accompanying video shows Sky Ranch Cave Springs' advertisement for its youth retreats.


Anonymous said...

I wonder how many people who were blasting the Doe Family for suing over Victory and claiming that there was no preference for Christianity are now going to admit that they were mistaken.

I hope the district is sued again and again ad nauseum until they learn that indoctrinating children who are not their own in a government capacity is unconstitutional.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if they still recite the Lord's prayer before games?

It's ok by me.

Anonymous said...

The problem with Christians is that they always pray to win rather than praying to do their best.

Anonymous said...


Not this again!

Anonymous said...

6:52. Probably was in the band.

Anonymous said...

There wasn't a sermon. They used the facility.

Anonymous said...

10:36 Your Homer Simpson has worn out its welcome.

Work on some new material.

Anonymous said...


I never use comic book figures, I always use DISCREDITED AND INCOMPETENT REPUBLICAN POLITICIANS as examples.

In this case, it is the former baseball magnate from texASS who was born with his silver foot in his mouth- Dumbya Bush.

Anonymous said...

Just because they used the facility doesn't mean Christianity was pushed there. Also, let's just be honest, what's the big deal anyways? Our world would be a better place with people trying to follow Jesus! Sure can't be any worse than it is now.

Anonymous said...

The world would be a lot better off without any religion of any kind. Far too many people have been killed in the name of religion, and Christians were just as guilty as the rest of them.

Anonymous said...

"George Bush has claimed he was on a mission from God when he launched the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, according to a senior Palestinian politician in an interview to be broadcast by the BBC later this month.

Mr Bush revealed the extent of his religious fervour when he met a Palestinian delegation during the Israeli-Palestinian summit at the Egpytian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, four months after the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.

One of the delegates, Nabil Shaath, who was Palestinian foreign minister at the time, said: "President Bush said to all of us: 'I am driven with a mission from God'. God would tell me, 'George go and fight these terrorists in Afghanistan'. And I did. And then God would tell me 'George, go and end the tyranny in Iraq'. And I did."
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Mr Bush went on: "And now, again, I feel God's words coming to me, 'Go get the Palestinians their state and get the Israelis their security, and get peace in the Middle East'. And, by God, I'm gonna do it.""