I didn't even like writing that headline. This story on its face gives me major 1970s, murderous cult vibes.

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And it's 100% real. According to KWQC, a flyer circulated around the Moline-Coal Valley School District Tuesday promoting an after-school club sponsored by the Satanic Temple. The After School Satan Club is set to have its first meeting Thursday of this week.

It's not like this is at the high school level, either. The program is directed at 1st-5th graders at the elementary school, Jane Addams Elementary. According to the flyer, their religious background doesn't matter, and the club "does not attempt to convert children to any religious Ideology. Instead, The Satanic Temple supports children to think for themselves." It also claims that the temple is a "non-theistic religion that views Satan as a mythical figure representing individual freedom."

The club will meet once a month during the second half of the school year, where there will be science projects, games, arts and crafts, and outdoor activities. The flyer asks for the permission of parents or guardians to attend.

Due to parental concern and confusion, the school district released a statement that included the following:

The district does not discriminate against any groups who wish to rent our facilities, including religious-affiliated groups. Religiously affiliated groups are among those allowed to rent our facilities for a fee.

The district has, in the past, approved these types of groups, one example being the Good News Club, which is an after-school child evangelism fellowship group. Flyers and promotional materials for these types of groups are approved for lobby posting or display only, and not for mass distribution.


Our focus remains on student safety and student achievement.

The After School Satan Club website says the meetings are "based upon a uniform syllabus that emphasizes a scientific, rationalist, non-superstitious world view. We incorporate games, projects, and thinking exercises that help children understand how we know what we know about our world and our universe."

The site also appears to be staunch critics of organizations like Good News Clubs, saying the after school program is "established by an insidious organization known as the Child Evangelism Fellowship (CEF) whose stated mission is to 'evangelize boys and girls with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and to establish (disciple) them in the Word of God and in a local church for Christian living.'" It adds that the clubs have "created the need for Satanic after school clubs to offer a contrasting balance to student’s extracurricular activities."

Though there is no Satanic Temple in the state of Iowa, the closest one to eastern Iowa is located in Kenney, Illinois.

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