About this Case
Trinity Lutheran Church wanted to make the playground of its Child Learning Center safer. So, it applied for a grant from a Missouri state program that helped underwrite the cost of adding rubber surfaces. Although the church’s grant application received one of the highest scores in the evaluation process, the state denied the application based on its policy of denying grants to religiously affiliated applicants. The church sued the state over this discriminatory treatment. After losing in the U.S. District Court and U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit, the church appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Summary of NLF's Brief
Our brief in support of the church argued that discriminating against the church by denying it benefits that all other non-church pre-schools could receive violated the Free Exercise Clause of the U.S. Constitution.