- Associated Press - Thursday, July 6, 2017

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter told East Central University that a dispute over the chapel on its campus should be referred to his office.

In making the formal request Wednesday, Hunter made clear that he plans to take decisions about the chapel away from a committee formed by university President Katricia Pierson, the Tulsa World (https://bit.ly/2tV3Xxv ) reported.

The move comes after the university received a complaint from Washington, D.C.-based Americans United for Separation of Church and State about the chapel. Initially, Pierson announced that Bibles, religious iconography and a cross at the Kathryn P. Boswell Memorial Chapel would be removed in response, but she later reversed that decision and said a committee of faculty, staff and community members would need to review the situation first.

“In view of the fact that (the ECU) committee’s decision has a profound import beyond the campus of ECU for the State of Oklahoma and similarly situated entities, I am formally requesting that this matter be referred to the office of Attorney General,” Hunter wrote in his request.

Hunter said in his letter that he fears the university’s actions could lead to similar letters being sent to other universities.

“I will not allow guile and intimidation to dictate how Oklahoma’s public universities meet their legal obligations,” Hunter said.

The university has said the Kathryn P. Boswell Memorial Chapel opened in 1957 and is available for use by all faiths.

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Information from: Tulsa World, https://www.tulsaworld.com


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