The San Tan Library in Pinal County, Arizona, has reversed its decision to censor a local resident’s Christian book reading after receiving a demand letter from the First Liberty Institute, a religious liberty law firm, according to The Daily Signal.
The library had denied Ricardo Frias’ request to reserve space at the library to read “As You Grow,” a book by Christian actor Kirk Cameron, citing “separation of church and state,” even though the library’s rules allow community organizations to hold events.
The First Liberty Institute sent a letter to the Pinal County Board of Supervisors, urging them to reverse the library’s decision.
The letter stated, “The fact that Mr. Frias’ message involves religion does not disqualify him from using your meeting rooms.”
“Denying religious speakers a forum to speak while allowing similarly situated secular speakers to communicate their messages, not only violates the religious speaker’s free speech rights, but also their free exercise rights as well,” it went on to say.
According to Brave Books CEO Trent Talbot, “As You Grow” teaches traits that all children should learn, such as love, joy, peace, and patience. He stated, “I am thankful that the library backed down and allowed this story time to take place.”
“This is such a sweet book that every child should be allowed to read,” Talbot said.
More than 50 public libraries have previously banned Brave Books’ “As You Grow” story hour with Cameron, many of which opened their doors to Drag Queen Story Hours but rejected the Christian messages of Cameron.
Despite this, Brave Books is continuing its story hour movement, with Talbot saying, “We are just getting started, and there’s some big things happening in the background.”
Cameron said he was encouraged by Ricardo Frias’ fearless faith and moral courage: “I’m inspired by him and think we’ll be seeing more of this hero in coming chapters of America’s comeback story.”
He added, “History is ‘His Story,’ filled with plot twists, surprise endings, and a cast of colorful characters. Ricardo Frias is one of the good guys leading the charge against seemingly overwhelming odds to overcome evil with good.”