Woman Convicted of Aiding Murder Sues to Stop Prison System From ‘Imposing Strong Christian Values on Inmates’

TOPEKA, Kan. — A Thelemite woman who is serving a 40-year sentence surrounding the murder of her husband has filed suit against the Kansas Department of Corrections in an effort to force the prison to stop “imposing strong Christian values on inmates.”

The American Humanist Association (AHA) filed suit on behalf of Shari Webber-Dunn, who follows Thelema, a mystic philosophy developed by occultist Aleister Crowley that is based on the mantra “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.” Thelemites identify as anything from atheists to polytheists.

According to the lawsuit, Christian prayers and messages are posted on bulletin boards throughout the Topeka Correctional Facility, with one board including an envelope where inmates may submit their prayer requests.

“Don’t worry: God is never blind to your tears, never deaf to your prayers, and never silent to your pain. He sees, He hears, and He will deliver,” one of the messages reads.

“In happy moments, praise God. In difficult moments, seek God. In quiet moments, trust God. In every moment, thank God,” another exhorts.

Christian films are also broadcasted on facility televisions, and Christian music is played in the background while inmates participate in a crochet program for charity. A large cross is additionally displayed in a basement room used for various gatherings, including Christian worship services.

“Webber-Dunn views the cross as disrespectful to all non-Christians and as echoing the oppressive message that Christianity looms over the inmates at all times and they are powerless to do anything about it,” the suit reads.

  • Connect with Christian News

In June, Webber-Dunn submitted a request that the Christian messages be removed from the bulletin boards and that the cross be covered when not in use for worship services.

Because she has not received a response, she filed suit this week, claiming that “imposing strong Christian values on inmates … violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.”

Webber-Dunn

“Defendants’ actions, failures to act, and policies described above lack a secular purpose, have the effect of promoting, favoring, and endorsing religion—particularly Christianity—over non-religion, and result in an excessive entanglement between government and religion, thus violating the Establishment Clause,” the legal challenge reads.

As Webber-Dunn claims that she has been “damaged” by her encounters with Christian messages at Topeka Correctional Facility, she is seeking an injunction prohibiting the prison system from displaying such messages and symbols throughout the all-women’s prison and “imposing strong Christian values on inmates” throughout the state. She is not eligible for parole until 2034.

Historic American statesman Daniel Webster, who held office both in the House and Senate, once said, “If the power of the gospel is not felt throughout the length and breadth of the land, anarchy and misrule, degradation and misery, corruption and darkness will reign without mitigation or end.”

Noah Webster, known as the father of American education, also said, “All the miseries and evils which men suffer from—vice, crime, ambition, injustice, oppression, slavery and war—proceed from their despising or neglecting the precepts contained in the Bible.”


A special message from the publisher...

Dear Reader, because of your generous support, we have received enough funds to send many audio Bibles to Iraqi and Syrian refugees displaced by ISIS in the Middle East. Many have been distributed and received with gladness. While we provide for the physical needs of the people, we seek to provide the eternal hope only found in Jesus Christ through the word of God. Would you join us by making a donation today to this important work? Please click here to send an audio Bible to a refugee family >>

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
  • mr goody two shoes

    Our little Wels synod has the largest prison ministry in the USA.

  • meamsane

    I wonder what the other inmates think about Miss Webber-Dunn’s apparent belief that she is the only one that matters in there?

    • Cady555

      She believes she matters equally. Why don’t you?

      • meamsane

        I expressed no sentiment in relation to your question.
        It seems you simply read into what was not there.

        • Jerome Horwitz

          No, he responded with a non answer.

        • Cady555

          “…Webber-Dunn’s apparent belief that she is the only one that matters in there.”

          Gee, why would I think you have zippo sympathy for Ms. Webber- Dunn?

          She does not believe that she is the only one that matters.

          So say plainly whether you believe it is okay to subject a person to ceaseless proselytizing, especially in a situation where they have no means of avoiding the religious pressure. Say plainly whether it is okay to make an inmate listen to religious messages in order to participate in secular prison activities

          • meamsane

            She didn’t care much for her husband’s right to continue living, did she?
            So now she’s in prison for it and now she wants to expunge the prison ministry because she personally doesn’t like it? She’s not being made to do anything except serve out her prison term.

      • Jerome Horwitz

        BS. Barbra Streisand. This is not about her not wanting to hear about the gospel. This is about her not wanting anyone else to either. That is selfish, along with words I cannot use here.

        • Cady555

          Do not bear false witness.

          She merely wants participation in christian prayer, listening to christian music to be voluntary.

          Voluntary means some can choose to participate while others can choose not to.

          To say that she wants no one to have access to christian activity is a bald faced lie.

  • Paladin Roy

    I can see her point. She is blaming the Lord for her predicament, and scared of excepting the blame herself. What a hell to pay, if these things are done.

    What if …….

    Finally, after these things are gone, she accepts the Lord. ….. Then hungering for Fellowship but there is none. Hungering for Righteousness in the prison, but there is none. Hungering to see messages of the Lord, but it’s not allowed anymore. Hungering for Holiness, but there is none in that place. … Nothing but what she herself had fought for, and then would have to live with for many years to come.

    For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. ..John 3:20

    • Cady555

      She is not blaming your deity for her predicament. She is asking to not be subjected to ceaseless, in your face proselytization.

      She wants to crochet for charity without Jesus music in the background.

  • Cady555

    This is another good example of why it’s important to change the labels. Imagine if a christian inmate was in a cell block that was mostly Muslim. They give inmates a chance to participate in charitable projects, but only if they are willing to listen to broadcasts of Muslim prayers the entire time. They show movies, but in half an inaccurate christian stereotype is the villian. The post muslim scripture on the walls, along with platitudes encouraging the worship of Allah.

    Would you have sympathy for a christian in that situation? Would you understand why they would like to be free of incessant muslim proselytization?

    Can you extend the same sympathy to others like Jesus told you to do? Do unto others.

    • james blue

      Think you nailed it.

    • Amos Moses – He>i

      i think that would be an immense OPPORTUNITY for the christian to CONVERT those muslims to Christ …. and it happens all the time ………….. because they ALREADY accept Christ ….. unlike the anti-theist …………..

      • Cady555

        This being the United States of America, you do not have the right to impose your religious beliefs or rituals on other people.

        You have the right to pray and listen to Jesus music and believe in your religious teaching. Others have the right to say “No thanks. Not interested.”

        • Amos Moses – He>i

          “This being the United States of America, you do not have the right to impose your religious beliefs or rituals on other people.”

          This being the United States of America, you do not have the right to impose your NONreligious beliefs or rituals on other people.

          • Freezefred45

            In what world is NOT imposing religious rituals the same as imposing nonrelgious rituals?

          • Amos Moses – He>i

            this one ….. secular (devoid of God) is as or more “religious” ………..

          • Freezefred45

            This is about NOT imposing a ritual though! Does not having a religious ritual count as a ritual now?

          • Amos Moses – He>i

            sure it is ….. the ritual is to have people reject God from the market place of ideas ….. and the reason for that type of religious ritual is that secular religion cannot compete on an equal footing ……. and they therefore desire monopoly ………

          • Freezefred45

            Religion can be in the marketplace of ideas all it wants, the government just can’t give it support.

          • Amos Moses – He>i

            enforced absence of religion ….. which the government is trying to enforce … IS religion …… nature abhors a vacuum ….. remove christainity and something else will takes its place ….. whether you desire it to or not ….. so it comes down to WHICH is it going to be …….

          • Freezefred45

            Enforced absence of religion would be closing down all churches, mosques, etc. Lack of government funded churches is not the same thing.

          • Amos Moses – He>i

            “Lack of government funded churches is not the same thing.”

            removal of God from the public spaces ….. spaces that belong to the public ….. creates a vacuum ….. nature abhors a vacuum …… something will fill that void ………

    • Amos Moses – He>i

      Acts 16:16-40

      Paul and Silas in prison …. converting the prisoners AND THE GUARDS ………….

  • Jerome Horwitz

    There has never been any doubt or question Christian-based prison ministries work in reforming convicts. The fact some selfish, devil worshiping pig wants to stop it is absolutely appalling in every way possible.

    • james blue

      Can you show any credible study that used comparable research methods (such as a control sample) to show that they have any lesser or greater effect on recidivism than non faith based programs or no program use at all?

      • Jerome Horwitz

        Can you give clear, convincing evidence not having such ministries can and will have a positive effect on the prison population?

        • james blue

          Did you actually read my question?

          • Jerome Horwitz

            Yes. You seem to think convicts would be better off without the presence of a prison ministry.

            Can you offer anything beyond your bigotry to back it up?

            Thing is, I have grown well beyond tired of people like this noisy wet fart and yourself who seek to stifle Christianity simply because you don’t like being told what to do. She most definitely doesn’t, which is why she’s in prison. She needs to wipe and flush herself.

          • james blue

            Lose the persecution complex and try reading it again.

            If it helps, take your mouse and run the pointer to the first word of the question, left click and hold then drag it down to the last word so that everything is highlighted, you will find NOTHING written “between the lines” I made no statement, I asked a question. If you weren’t so determined to feel persecuted you’d see that.

          • Jerome Horwitz

            In other words, you can’t defend it beyond your bigotry. Big. Shock.

          • james blue

            Sigh.

            Okay well I’m an adult….So…….

          • Jerome Horwitz

            Who happens to be a bigot…..so….

        • Bezukhov

          It does have a “Positive Effect”. As a prisoner you thump your Bible along with everyone else. They think you’re reformed. You get out early on “Good Behaviour”, and because you pretended to get baptized. Once you’re back on the streets it back to business as usual.

          • Jerome Horwitz

            So what’s your point?

          • Bezukhov

            If I were in prison I would join in the charade of playing a Christian, if I thought it would lessen my sentence.

          • Amos Moses – He>i

            i can name a few who were saved in prison ….. never made parole ever …. and never will …….. and i think one was given the option …. and chose to stay in prison as a minister to the rest of the inmates ………… David Berkowitz (Son of Sam killer) got saved in prison …. still there ……… AriseandShine org …….

          • Jerome Horwitz

            Speaking only for yourself. Any proof this has actually happened? Feel free to provide names and citations.

    • Cady555

      Do Not Bear False Witness.

      She does not oppose religious ministries.

      She does not worship the devil.

      She is not a pig.

      She wants the christian ministry portion sepatated from other activities so that those who want to participate in christian activities can, while those who do not can still crochet, watch movies and participate in secular activities.

      • Jerome Horwitz

        Do Not Bear False Witness.

        Project much?

        She does not worship the devil.

        Aleister Crowley worshipped the devil. She practices a “religion” created by Crowley. Look it up.

        This woman is in prison. She wishes to impart her will upon everyone else as if she runs the place. You are defending it with lies and projection because you feel the same way.

  • MCrow

    I was about to side with the prison on the bulletin board. However, the music, movies, and having no other option goes against her right to, basically, be left alone. If they want to provide the option to have a Christian inmate movie, music, and prayer group, the prison should provide that space, but should not force anyone to participate

    • Jerome Horwitz

      She’s in prison. No such right exists. But she’s trying to invent one at the expense of Christian prison ministries nationwide.

      • MCrow

        Prison ministries are fine. Prisons acting as the ministry are not.

  • DALALLGOO

    Christians can write her here.

    WEBBER, SHARI L
    (KDOC# 0060888)

    Topeka Correctional Facility

    815 Southeast Rice Road
    Topeka , KS 66607

    • Amos Moses – He>i

      just the christians ………. although it is a christian duty to visit those incarcerated ……

      • DALALLGOO

        Yes just the Christians Mr Moses. She is asking for help really & the world has done all it can for her. I have been in jail and getting mail is a big thing. “…how can they hear without someone preaching to them?” Rom 10:14

        • Amos Moses – He>i

          good points ………

        • Amos Moses – He>i

          and drop that “mr” stuff ………

    • Cady555

      Flagged for doxing.

      • Jerome Horwitz

        Sit down and shut up. She has this coming.

  • Faithwalker

    Webber-Dunn claims that she has been “damaged” by her encounters with Christian messages at Topeka Correctional Facility.

    No…she was damaged prior to receiving her sentence for murdering her husband.

    • Amos Moses – He>i

      OUCH …. that truth spanking hurts ………….

  • Jack-b-Quicker

    Bravo. You can see your work is well-doing when the swine oink in derision.

    • Jerome Horwitz

      Which means what?