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We've reported several times in recent years on the trend of churches marketing sex sermon series or offering bedroom challenges to couples. For most, it's created the intended buzz and media attention-along with a fair share of controversy. Now one Florida congregation tackling the still-taboo-in-church topic is causing more of a stir than it probably hoped for.

New Hope Church in Melbourne, Fla., has been notified that it may have to find a new home as a result of a recent three-week series called "Great Sex for You." Leaders from Brevard County School District's risk management department threatened to evict the church from its current rented meeting place at Sherwood Elementary School, in part because of the church's marketing. Earlier this month New Hope sent out 25,000 promotional fliers to its community that asked, "Is Your Sex Life a Bore?" New Hope pastor Bruce Cadle believes the church has been "shamefully silent" on the topic of sex. "We are not talking technique or anything offensive; we were just talking about the truth that makes a marriage strong," Cadle said.

Although others may agree, officials from Brevard County received several complaints from parents who didn't appreciate that Sherwood Elementary's name was on a flier picturing the feet of a man and woman in bed. "We believe the type of advertising used is not appropriate for students to read in any elementary school," said Mark Langdorf, the school district's director of risk management. "It should not be used to advertise any event held at an elementary school in Brevard County."

Added Brevard County representative Christine Davis: "Those are Pre-K through 6th-grade students. That is not a topic we discuss with those children. It was not the content-the church can preach anything they like just like any church can. It was the way they advertised it in the school."

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Though Cadle says he's sorry for causing any trouble for Sherwood Elementary, he's "shocked in this day and age that anyone would be offended by that." The pastor also says he has no regrets, in part because the new series has drawn at least 23 new first-time visitors to the church of 300 people.

The school district board plans to decide later this week whether to keep New Hope's rental contract. [, 4/27/09;, 4/27/09]

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