A homosexual couple has won the first round in their lawsuit
against the Christian owners of a bed and breakfast in England who
plan to pursue round two.
When Susanne Wilkinson and her husband refused to accommodate
the homosexual couple, citing their Christian beliefs, they were
sued (see earlier story). Reading Crown Court has
now found that Mrs. Wilkinson discriminated against Michael Black
and John Morgan because of their sexual orientation. But one
activist says that ruling is flawed.
"Susanne Wilkinson and Mike, her husband, run their
business from their home, and they have very deeply held
convictions, biblical convictions, that all sex outside of marriage
is contrary to God's purposes," Andrea Williams of Christian
Concern recently told BBC. "So actually that applies to
heterosexual couples and also to same-sex couples -- all sex
outside of marriage is wrong."
With the initial ruling favoring the homosexual couple, Williams
wonders whether religious freedom actually exists anymore in the
"Now, what are we going to say to all those people who have
those kinds of convictions? Are they going to be taken out of the
public space?" she asks.
"I mean, indeed as we begin to look … Catholic adoption agencies
are being closed because they believe children need a mother and a
father -- that's actually happened. We've seen registrars lose
their job because they won't preside over same-sex civil
The Wilkinsons were found guilty of breaching the Equality Act
of 2007 and will have to pay the same-sex couple more than $5,700
in damages. They do, however, plan to appeal, arguing that the law
needs to be more flexible so that it allows liberty of conscience
for people of faith.