City of Pueblo Settles RLUIPA Suit by The Christian Growth Center

City of Pueblo Settles RLUIPA Suit Brought by Nussbaum | Gleason on Behalf of the Christian Growth Center

On September 25, 2023, the City Council of Pueblo, Colorado, approved a settlement with the Christian Growth Center and its pastor Reverend Paul Elder of the Church’s lawsuit against the City regarding the Church’s longstanding RV Evangelist Ministry.

The Church’s RV Evangelist Ministry provides a single RV hookup to itinerant evangelists when they preach to the congregation of the Christian Growth Center. As Reverend Elder explained in testimony to the City’s Zoning Board of Appeals, fully 95% of the approximately 400 Pentecostal churches associated with the Christian Growth Center provide an RV Evangelist Ministry. Welcoming traveling evangelists through the RV Evangelist Ministry is, as church member Sister Carol Lee put it, the Church’s “lifeblood.” Reverend Elder explained that the RV Evangelist Ministry is an essential part of the Church’s religious exercise and that “elimination of this ministry would drastically change the way we worship.”

The City began criminal prosecution of the Church and Reverend Elder for its RV Evangelist Ministry in the Spring of 2021. After a lengthy administrative appeals process, the Church’s attorney, Andrew Nussbaum, filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the District of Colorado asserting claims under the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act and the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment.

The City Council approved the settlement on September 25, 2023. The agreement allows the Church to continue its RV Evangelist Ministry and requires the City to pay the Church’s attorneys’ fees and costs related to the suit.

“Nussbaum Gleason PLLC is extremely proud to represent clients like Reverend Elder and his church,” said Andrew Nussbaum. “The inalienable rights we cherish as a country depend upon individuals and congregations who have the courage to stand up against state power. Justice has been served by this historic settlement agreement for the Church.”

Coverage of the lawsuit and settlement can be found here, hereherehere, and here.

Related Posts

Window of Opportunism

Window of Opportunism By: Martin Nussbaum First Things, December 2023  SO·CALLED “WINDOW bills,” which eliminate statutes of limitations on child sexual abuse claims for periods of

Read More »


We are located on the fourteenth floor of the First Bank Building in downtown Colorado Springs.


2 N. Cascade Ave., Suite 1430 Colorado Springs, CO 80903

Contact Phone

(719) 428-4937

Email Information