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'After School Satan Club' Coming to Portland School

But it's about teaching science, not worshiping Beelzebub
By Daniel Kay,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 28, 2016 5:43 PM CDT
'After School Satan Club' Coming to Portland School
A holiday "Snaketivity" scene by The Satanic Temple.   (Robert Killips/The State Journal via AP, File)

Normally, an elementary school adding an after-school program isn't cause for national headlines. Things are little different when the program is called the After School Satan Club. The Portland chapter of the Satanic Temple has just been approved to establish the club at Sacramento Elementary School in Portland, the Oregonian reports. Despite the name, CBS clarifies that the Satanic Temple's focus is on teaching science and critical reasoning, not devil-worship, the idea being to counter Christian after-school groups springing up around the nation. The After School Satan Club will run once monthly, on Wednesdays, at the same time the Evangelical Christian Good News Club meets at the school.

The Satanic Temple itself isn't quite what its name suggests, explained the Washington Post in a previous story. It "doesn’t espouse a belief in the existence of a supernatural being that other religions identify solemnly as Satan, or Lucifer, or Beelzebub," but it's fond of offering "tongue-in-cheek" support of the devil to make a point about the separation of church and state. The temple has been expanding into after-school programming specifically to counter the increasing influence of religious after-school programs like the Good News Club, which were given the go-ahead by the Supreme Court in 2001. The After School Satan Club ultimately hopes to establish a chapter in every school where the Good News Club has a presence, Fox News reports. (More Satan stories.)

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