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City Officials, Religious Leaders Want Mayor To Obey Court On Religion And Schools

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City officials and religious leaders in front of City Hall - New York, NY - Feb 17, 2012 (credit: Alex Silverman / WCBS 880)

City officials and religious leaders in front of City Hall – New York, NY – Feb 17, 2012 (credit: Alex Silverman / WCBS 880)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - This week, a federal judge ruled that, for now, the city has to allow private religious groups to rent school space for services.

WCBS 880’s Alex Silverman On The Story

City Councilman Fernando Cabrera says it isn’t happening.

“Not one church has been given permission from the Board of Ed. to be there this Sunday,” he said in front of City Hall on Friday.

Public Advocate Bill De Blasio had this message for Mayor Michael Bloomberg: “I hope that neither he nor anyone at the Department of Education thinks they can ignore this court order, cause it’s crystal clear.”

“There can be no game playing about Sunday. These houses of worship have a right to be there,” he added.

The city’s law department released this statement on Friday: “As you know, we are seeking an immediate review from the Second Circuit. In the meantime, DOE will consider applications to hold services this weekend in accordance with normal procedures set forth in Chancellor’s Regulation D-180. DOE is processing permit applications as expeditiously as possible.”

In the meantime, religious leaders like Salvador Savino say they are going to make themselves crystal clear this weekend.

“We are going to worship the lord this next Sunday, even if it’s in the sidewalk, which is our right,” he said.

“We’re asking for the same rights everyone else has and we’re also asking for the same respect,” said Rick Del Rio, who runs a church on the Lower East Side.

Where do you stand? Sound off in the comments section below!

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