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National Cemetery Blocks Knights of Columbus from Hosting ‘Religious’ Memorial Day Service

Updated: May 14, 2024 at 5:16 pm EST  See Comments

Officials at the Poplar Grove National Cemetery near Petersburg, Virginia have denied the Knights of Columbus a permit to hold its annual Memorial Day service in their cemetery citing that it has a new policy prohibiting “religious services” there. 

According to First Liberty Institute, a non-profit legal group representing the Knights of Columbus, National Park Service officials are allowing other events to be held at the cemetery, but require the age-old tradition of hosting the annual Memorial Day mass to be held outside cemetery grounds. 

First Liberty sent a demand letter this week asking the Park Service to grant the Catholic fraternal service order its permit. 

“Our hope is that the National Park Service will immediately correct this error and grant the permit,” said John Moran, attorney and partner at McGuire Woods. “This policy and the decision to block the Knights of Columbus from continuing their long-standing religious tradition is a blatant violation of the First Amendment and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.”

According to the letter, the Knights of Columbus has held a Memorial Day mass to honor and pray for the nation’s fallen soldiers at Poplar Grove since the 1960s.

But last year, for the first time, the NPS

The remainder of this article is available in its entirety at CBN

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