public schools used as rental space???


I live in the Tulsa area & I’ve noticed for the past few months, since school’s been out, these banners hanging on fences in front of public elementary schools advertizing the latest “pop up churches” that are holding worship services at these schools.

This morning there was a door hanger on my front door for one of these churches having service at my daughter’s school on Saturday night in the cafeteria???

I’m curious to know if this is happening across the country? I’m guessing that these churches are having to pay the school boards/city for using the facilities?

This is the first time I’ve seen this sort of thing & find it odd…


Not sure; but as long as they put the extra money to good use, can’t say i object.


I live in the south and it has been pretty common here for non-denominational churchs to rent space in our local schools. I know of at least 4 or 5 within 10 miles of my home. I believe it came out of the NYC case noted in this article:


My parish rented a portion of the high school across the street while the building was going up. After the politically correct school board kicked us out, we rented the shrine temple.


Yup… that happens here too…

Actually I also remember as a child going to Mass at a public school cafeteria while our new parish was being built… very vague memory, though…


Well since it happens elsewhere…

Thanks for the responses. :slight_smile:

God Bless


When I taught in Michigan, our school was “rented out” on weekends to a church. The only reason any of the teachers knew about it was because on Monday’s we’d come into the staff lounge to find religious writings on the whiteboard. Written discussions on “biblical submission of wives” and “thoughts on parallels between the book of Isaiah and Jesus” aren’t something one expects to find in a highly secular public school. The principal was asked, he explained the situation, and after that, either the church or the school’s janitor cleaned the board before we got to lunch.


This has been going on for decades. My old parish before it was built had Mass at the public elementary school behind the property it was built on -this was before I was born.
We also had catechism class every Monday after school in our public elementary school.


That happens all the time around here. During non-school hours public schools are used for all kinds of events–scouting meetings, churches, homeowner association meetings, etc. I don’t know what the criteria are for who they allow and who they don’t, but you do pay a rental fee. I’ve been to rectials from private dance and music schools and other similar events at the schools too.

Why don’t you check your school districts website and see if they have the guidelines listed there?


Not as odd as the begginings of Willow Creek that started in empty movie theaters they rented space from when they were a small club. Now Mega Church.

I guess its better than my parish renting out the gym to a Jazzercise group in the summer.


It has been going on for decades here as well. We also have ones that rent houses, rent movie theaters, etc.

Our church has rented out space to a preschool, an aikido class, an Irish dance school, the local children’s theater program., for workshops, family get togethers, etc. It’s an important part of our budget.

The local Reform Jewish Temple rents out a large Catholic church in the area in order to have enough space for everyone to attend High Holy Days services, as there isn’t sufficient room at the Temple (they have somewhere around a 1000 families, IIRC).


our last parish in Ohio rented space in the middle school for CCD on Sunday morning until we built a new multi-purpose building with classrooms. I think it is fairly common and probably a good money maker for the schools. MS was accessible by a footpath from the church, and we also were allowed to use their lot for overflow parking (which is still the case for Easter, Christmas and other crowded days, as the city will not allow them to put in more parking). The parish reciprocated because ours was the largest gathering space in town so things like community Thanksgiving service with combined choirs of several churches, ecumenical baccalaureate service for HS grads were held in our church.


I don’t know where Tulsa is; Yes, I live in Canada & there’s church services going on at the public school that’s really close to where I live–practically less than 1 min. It’s a non-denominational church (I’m pretty sure) and they use the school gym.

Often Christian schools have chapels/ use their gym and worship there, sometimes asking a priest/minister to come over; so I guess many are used to this.


This is not uncommon. When we first moved to Northern California we attended a mission church which had mass in a public elementary school multi-purpose room.


Is quite a common practise in my home country that such churches moving around from places to places on a rental. Becoz to secure a land/building and a license to practise Christianity at a designated place need time for the federal government approval

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