United Kingdom Ruling Keeps Children from Christian Foster Parents

This week a court in the United Kingdom determined that, based on Human Rights documents and UK law, that a Chrisitan foster care family was unsuitable for providing care to children.  Because the couple, based on their personal faith in Jesus Christ, held that homosexuality was not God's design for relationships, the court removed the parents from the roles of service for children in need of care. 
The dispute focused on married couple Eunice and Owen Johns and the Derby City Council. Having applied to the Council in 2007 to foster a child, the Johns' application was blocked, based on the Council's objection that "the Johns were not willing to promote the practise of homosexuality to a young child." In November 2010 both parties jointly asked the Court to rule on whether the Johns were able to foster children, or whether they could be excluded from doing so under equality law because of their Christian beliefs, and that judgment was released eariler this week.
The judgment strongly affirms homosexual rights over freedom of conscience or free exercise and leaves the Johns currently unable to provide foster care to any child in need, despite their proven track record as foster parents. It appears that in light of this decision Christians who wish to adopt or foster children must compromise their faith and promote the practice of homosexuality to small children.

In fact, the summary contained in the judgment sends out the clear message that orthodox Christian ethical beliefs are potentially harmful to children and that Christian parents with mainstream Christian views are not suitable to be considered as potential foster parents. Distinguishing that their decision was based on "sexual ethics" rather than on faith, the court has firmly concreted harm to children by denying them the potential of any Christian couple to care for them.

Read the entire text of the decision here (attached), and the UK article here http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/node/14234.
CBN News discussed this concern eariler this week, and an article at Charisma Magazine details that the Court ruled that parents who adhere to faith in Christ, and Christianity generally are harmful to children.   http://www.charismamag.com/index.php/news/30325-uk-court-rules-christianity-harmful-to-children
Decisions like this deconstuct marriage and the family in ways many people never imagined possible, and work to the destruction of families, rather than their restoration.  This is particularly aggregious for those hundreds of thousands of kids waning in state custody for foster care and adoption.

The judgment states a clear preference for human rights, but for homosexuals, and not for Christians.  "The equality provisions concerning sexual orientation should take precedence" for a child's welfare."  This precedent declares that a local authority can require positive attitudes to be demonstrated towards homosexuality, and that "Article 9 [of the European Human Rights Act] only provides a 'qualified' right to manifest religious belief and ... this will be particularly so where a person in whose care a child is placed wishes to manifest a belief that is inimical to the interests of children."

Charisma writes: "The judgment was greeted with disbelief and sadness today by Eunice and Owen Johns. In a statement, the couple said:
 'We wanted to offer a loving home to a child in need. But because of this ruling we are unsure how we can continue the application process. We have been excluded because we have moral opinions based on our faith, and a vulnerable child has now probably missed the chance of finding a safe and caring home. We do not believe that our ordinary Christian moral views are infectious, contrary to what the Equality and Human Rights Commission believes. Being a Christian is not a crime and should not stop us from raising children. Today, it looks as though a child has missed out on a home.'"

Read more: http://www.charismamag.com/index.php/news/30325-uk-court-rules-christianity-harmful-to-children#ixzz1FSy8F98B.


  1. I look back, nostalgically, to the day when the “wall of separation” as articulated in Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptists meant freedom for religion, not freedom from religion as the ACLU would have us think. And this was not 200 years ago, but 50 years ago. School in prayers was secure, presidents prayed on the radio, and people acknowledged that God was almighty, supreme, and a constant shepherd over this country.
    In 1953, Eisenhower said: “this is a war of light against darkness, freedom against slavery, Godliness against atheism”. Today, the battle that Eisenhower described continues all over the world, and not just in Islamic countries, but here in western democracies. It is frightening that the U.K. courts came to the conclusion that Christian foster parents would be unsuitable influences on foster children because of the beliefs because what happens in Europe usually migrates to the United States. Justice Kennedy is well known for looking at for looking at foreign law and comparing international standards to this country. In his Lawrence v. Texas opinion, Kennedy cited international law to support the Court’s holding that homosexual sodomy cannot be prohibited by the government, as it is a matter of individual privacy rights. The rights of homosexual couples have since been expanded in some states like Massachusetts where now foster agencies cannot refuse to place foster children with homosexual couples. The redefinition of societal norms is detrimental to the family and society. The argument that Christians are unsuitable because of their moral beliefs undermines the foundations of Western society. The majority of Americans for over 200 years banned sodomy and homosexuality through the police power of the states because they believed it was wrong. Today, those moral norms have been overturned by the Supreme Court, which begs the question; what’s next? Is America to go the way of Great Britain? Is our Supreme Court to find a liberty interest in a child’s right to be free from religious indoctrination?
    I find it sadly ironic that Great Britain has decided that homosexual families are deemed acceptable, but that couples who have Christian convictions and beliefs are deemed unsuitable to be foster parents. I am very blessed to live in the United States, and am thankful for the Free Exercise Clause.

  2. I am not sure if, and in what form, the United Kingdom maintains a Best Interest of the Child Standard to govern issues of adoption, but it seems to me that by not allowing a Christian couple to serve as foster parents is contrary to the best interests of the child, especially when the couple has a proven track record in foster care. A response to this point might be that a couple which refuses to acknowledge homosexuality would result in teachings/guidance that is contrary to the best interest of the child. However, this response ignores the value that objective morals will have on the development of the child. It seems to me that raising a child with a strong sense of right and wrong is indeed serving the best interest of the child, even if (as humans) we cannot fully know what is right and what is wrong.