A Bahai, a Sikh and a Mormon student each said prayers this year at Kingsburg High's baccalaureate, a pre-graduation church service. Student organizers originally wanted the Bahai, Sikh and Mormon to talk about their faiths, but they changed those plans after some local ministers said that might cause tension in the community. Some of the ministers heard that people might try to disrupt a service that featured talks by the three students. No one disrupted the students from saying their prayers.
Baccalaureate at Kingsburg High is traditionally a Christian service, and student organizers came away with mixed feelings about their efforts to make the event -- in their words -- more inclusive to more students. Participation is voluntary.
"We were a little upset that we didn't have our original plan, but I like how it turned out," Katharine Langel said. "We made progress at including everyone in baccalaureate, but it was sad to see how difficult it was" to do that.