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Lawsuit continues over high school graduations held at a church

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A federal judge is letting Brookfield Central and East high schools hold their graduations at the Elmbrook mega-church this weekend.

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But the lawsuit that challenged the location is not over.

The Americans United for the Separation of Church-and-State also wants damages from past ceremonies held by several schools at the church over the last decade.

And the group promises to appeal if Federal Judge Charles Clevert rules against them.

Tuesday, Clevert gave the two Brookfield schools the go-ahead to hold their weekend commencements at the church, just like they have for years.

The judge said "a ceremony in a church does not necessarily constitute a church ceremony." He rejected a preliminary injunction which sought to move the graduations, but a final ruling on the merits of the case is still pending.

Alex Luchenitser of the church and state group says he's still confident the judge will make a final ruling that the graduations were unconstitutional.

School officials say the church is the only large hall in the community that can accommodate all the graduates' families. And only recently did they start looking for other possible venues.

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