Restaurant Ends ‘Praying in Public’ Discount After Public Backlash

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Forgive this receipt, for it has sinned. Or disciminated, maybe? Photo: Z88.3, Orlando FL/Facebook

Mary's Gourmet Diner may or may not have attracted that rush of prayerful poseurs that seemed inevitable when the world found out its servers chop 15 percent off the bills of patrons spotted "praying in public," but, lo and behold, there was a lot of Facebook hate and a sternly worded Freedom from Religion Foundation release issued, which argued the practice is tantamount to religious discrimination, per the Civil Rights Act. Restaurant receipts with sometimes nebulously religious messages are something that cause mass outrage these days, and now proprietor Mary Haglund has decided to pull the plug on the discount altogether.

Previously, the restaurant explained in a Facebook post that there's no underlying rhyme or reason to how or to whom it's given, and that the discount wasn't even denominational or official policy, at that.

"It's a gift we give at random to customers who take a moment before their meal," the diner explained, for a "prayer or just a moment to breathe & push the busyness [sic] of the world away. Who you talk to or meditate on etc. is your business." This presumably left the door wide open for Flying Spaghetti Monster adherents and Church of Satan supplicants to get pennies off their home-fry scrambles, but apparently the ordeal got too messy, too fast: After Haglund reportedly learned of FFRF's history of suing others for this kind of thing and winning, the discount has now gone on to a better place.

Winston-Salem Diner Owner Ends 'Praying in Public' Discount After Scrutiny, Pressure [WGHP]
Earlier: Restaurant Offers 15 Percent Discount to Anyone Seen 'Praying in Public'