- The Washington Times - Monday, July 1, 2013

A Delaware pastor whose hopes to hold a Rehoboth Beach worship service were dashed by a denied government permit said that’s lunacy — the town was founded on Christian principles.

The Rev. Robert Dekker, pastor of New Covenant Presbyterian Church in Lewes, Del., had in May sought permission from the local town manager to hold eight Sunday services near the beach boardwalk. He recently was denied because of First Amendment issues.

“I cannot mix church and state,” Rehoboth City Manager Greg Ferrese said an email to the pastor, Delmarva Now reported. “I trust you understand.”

Well, Mr. Dekker didn’t — and on “Fox & Friends” on Wednesday he pointed to the ridiculousness of the city’s claim.

“There is a plaque right there [on the beach] that talks about the community being established as a permanent Christian camp … established to promote Christianity,” he said on the Fox program. “So it seems very ironic our permit was denied.”

Hes holding a prayer initiative “in defiance of tyranny” and to defend the concept of religious liberty, set for Independence Day on the same beach, Delmarva Now reported.

“We believe that we do have the liberty to proclaim the gospel,” Mr. Dekker said in the Delmarva Now article. “This whole concept of being silent and backing away, it doesn’t fit.”