El Paso, Texas — July 6, 2021. Today, the Center for Religious Expression (CRE) won a major victory for evangelism at the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals allowing Ryan Denton to share the gospel of Jesus Christ on public streets and sidewalks during in downtown El Paso during a local market.
Denton wants to evangelize through gospel pamphlets and friendly discussions about his faith. El Paso’s market is a uniquely suitable venue for Denton’s speech, a free and open public event that allows local community groups and non-profit organizations to use booths free of charge and permits all kinds of speech in the public areas. However, El Paso specifically banned religious proselytizing during the event.
Threatened with arrest, Denton reached out to CRE for help. When CRE could not obtain any relief from the city it pursued litigation in the federal court, the district court denied Denton’s inalienable right to share the gospel with people. CRE appealed to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and the appellate court argued with CRE, but acknowledged Denton’s constitutional rights granting him freedom to share the gospel with market attendees.
“We are pleased the Fifth Circuit affirmed a Christian’s right to share his faith in a public place.” said CRE Chief Counsel Nate Kellum. “El Paso cannot ban evangelism.”
Center for Religious Expression is a servant-oriented, non-profit 501(c)(3) Christian legal organization dedicated to the glory of God and the religious freedom of His people. For more information, visit http://www.crelaw.org.