This Christian Children’s Home Just Filed a Lawsuit Against the Biden Administration to Protect Its Religious Freedom to Place Children with Married Couples

The Holston United Methodist Home for Children, in operation for 126 years, is a Christian non-profit organization that places abused and neglected children into the homes of married couples and serves East Tennessee and Southwest Virginia.

Because the organization believes what the Bible teaches — that homosexuality and fornication are sins, and marriage is the union between one man and one woman — it doesn’t place children with homosexuals or unmarried couples.

Holston United Methodist Home for Children has filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to stop enforcement of a rule that bars HHS funding recipients from discriminating on the “basis of religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, and same-sex marriage status.” The organization alleges that the rule violates the Free Exercise Clause and the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

The organization contends that the rule “exceeds HHS’s statutory jurisdiction, authority, and limitations, is not in accordance with law, is arbitrary, capricious, and an abuse of discretion…”

HHS under Barack Obama issued a rule to redefine “sex” to include “gender identity.” A federal court barred the attempt to reinterpret the law, however, contending that it likely would violate the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. President Donald Trump’s HHS published a rule to align regulations with the court’s ruling, restoring “the rule of law by revising certain provisions that go beyond the plain meaning of the law as enacted by Congress.” But courts blocked the Trump administration’s rule that protected religious organizations, and HHS under Biden rescinded it.

From Holston United Methodist Home for Children’s legal counsel, Alliance Defending Freedom:

“Holston Home is a force for good, living out the words of Christ to care for children and ‘the least of these.’ It is vital that Holston Home, as a religious organization, remains free to continue placing at-risk children in loving, Christian families, according to its deeply held beliefs, without fear of government punishment,” said ADF Senior Counsel Matt Bowman. “The Biden administration is wrong to remove religious exemptions to its unlawful grants rule.”

In a related case, the U.S. Supreme Court last summer unanimously ruled in favor of Catholic Social Services (CSS) in Fulton v. Philadelphia. The city had ended its 50-year contract with CSS and refused to extend it because CSS declined to certify homosexual couples as foster families.

“Government fails to act neutrally when it proceeds in a manner intolerant of religious beliefs or restricts practices because of their religious nature,” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote. “CSS seeks only an accommodation that will allow it to continue serving the children of Philadelphia in a manner consistent with its religious beliefs; it does not seek to impose those beliefs on anyone else.”

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