web analytics

Don’t Miss an Update! -Subscribe:

Follow AforFaith on Twitter

Categories

Religion Blogs - Blog Top Sites

Malware Free Guarantee

SiteLock

-Texas: City Law to Regulate Church Hiring?

by Dr. D ~ October 10th, 2018

Religious-Freedom-Web-146x180

A lawsuit has been filed against a City of Austin (TX) law which could force churches to hire folks who do not reflect their Biblical and theological beliefs and standards. Meanwhile, the city is not backing down and vows to support their ordinance in court. From the Christian Post:

… According to the lawsuit, the churches believe that the "Bible is the Word of God" and they "rely on the Bible rather than modern-day cultural fads for religious and moral guidance." As such, the churches will not hire "practicing homosexuals or transgendered people as clergy."

Additionally, the member churches require that employees live "according to the Bible’s teachings on matters of sexuality and gender." Because of this, the lawsuit states, these churches will "not consider practicing homosexuals or transgendered people for any type of church employment." 

As the Austin ordinance also bars discrimination on the basis of sex, the lawsuit also seeks protection of some member churches who feel the Bible doesn’t allow women to serve in the role of senior pastor because of the words of 2 Timothy 2:12.  …

<Read the whole article>

Response: This is not the first city to try and force churches to bend to the prevailing popular culture. In 2014, city leaders in Houston, Texas tried to force churches to comply with a ‘transgender bathroom’ ordinance and even subpoenaed churches which opposed the law to hand over recordings and notes of any sermons or teaching that opposed homosexuality in the process. As you can imagine that situation became a national  controversy. Also this will not be the last.

The city administrators are adamant about forcing everyone, including churches and religious institutions, to comply with their ‘anti-discrimination’ ordinance. According to city spokesperson David Green:

"The ordinance reflects our values and culture respecting the dignity and rights of every individual. …"We are prepared to vigorously defend the City against this challenge to the City’s civil rights protections."

What Green obviously means without saying it- the city’s ‘civil rights’ protections should trump the First Amendment and religious freedom from their perspective. However, it is doubtful that the courts will ultimately agree with Green and rule in favor of the city.

If taken literally, the ordinance would force the Catholic Church to ordain women priests and churches who do not believe in woman pastors to accept them any way? Not to even mention ordaining or hiring LGBT folks if it is contrary to church teaching. Fact is, the churches would never comply with this law regardless of what any city administrator may think or even how any judge may rule.

Fortunately the current makeup of the US Supreme Court means that this law will never even come close to trumping the First Amendment nor will it probably even challenge Texas state laws which protect religious freedom.               *Top

>>>Don't Miss an Update!**CLICK NOW**Get ANSWERS For The Faith by email<<<

2 Responses to -Texas: City Law to Regulate Church Hiring?

  1. Brian

    Here is the text of the Austin City ordinance on employment discrimination. There is no protection whatsoever for the employer’s religious belief or the employer’s status as a church or church-affiliated organization. Note that, as I read this ordinance, it would unlawful for a Christian church to reject an applicant for a position (including a position as clergy) not only based upon his/her gender and sexual orientation, but also based on her/her religious beliefs. Thus, if an atheist or a Muslim was to apply for a pastoral position with a church, a literal reading of this ordinance would lead to the conclusion that a church that rejects such an applicant engages in discrimination and is in violation of the statute.

    § 5-3-4 – UNLAWFUL EMPLOYMENT PRACTICES.

    (A)

    An employer may not:

    (1)

    fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual, or otherwise discriminate against an individual with respect to compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, based on the individual’s race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, or disability; or

    (2)

    limit, segregate, or classify an employee or applicant for employment in a way which would deprive or tend to deprive an individual of employment opportunities or otherwise adversely affect the individual’s status as an employee, based on the individual’s race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, or disability.

    (B)

    An It shall be an unlawful employment practice for an employment agency may not:

    (1)

    fail or refuse to refer for employment, or otherwise discriminate against, an individual based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, or disability; or

    (2)

    classify or refer for employment an individual based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age or disability.

    (C)

    A labor organization may not:

    (1)

    exclude or to expel from its membership, or otherwise discriminate against, an individual based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, or disability.

    (2)

    limit, segregate, or classify its membership, or applicants for membership, or classify or fail or refuse to refer for employment an individual in a way which would deprive or tend to deprive the individual of employment opportunities, limit employment opportunities, or otherwise adversely affect the individual’s status as an employee or as an applicant for employment, based on the individual’s race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, or disability; or

    (3)

    cause or attempt to cause an employer to discriminate against an individual in violation of this section.

    (D)

    An employer, labor organization, or joint labor-management committee controlling apprenticeship or other training or retraining, including on-the-job training programs, may not discriminate against an individual based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, or disability in admission to or employment in a program established to provide apprenticeship or other training.

    (E)

    Unless it is a bona fide occupational qualification for employment, an employer, labor organization, employment agency, or joint labor-management committee controlling apprenticeship or other training or retraining, including on-the-job training programs, may not print, publish, or cause to be printed or published a notice or advertisement that indicates a preference, limitation, specification, or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, or disability related to:

    (1)

    employment by the employer;

    (2)

    membership in or classification or referral for employment by an employment agency; or

    (3)

    admission to, or employment in, a program established to provide apprenticeship or other training by a joint labor-management committee.

    (F)

    Based on an individual’s opposition to an unlawful employment practice or the individual’s filing a charge, or testimony, assistance, or participation in an investigation, proceeding or hearing under this chapter:

    (1)

    an employer may not discriminate against an employee or applicant for employment;

    (2)

    an employment agency, or joint labor-management committee controlling apprenticeship or other training or retraining, including on-the-job training programs, may not discriminate against an individual; and

    (3)

    a labor organization may not discriminate against a member or applicant for membership.

  2. Dr. D

    Thanks Brian, If this ordinance was legally enforceable, which I do not believe it is, it could be used to destroy Christian churches. Obviously it will be overturned in its present form.

    These city officials kind of remind me of those in Communist China who also demand that they have a right to regulate the choosing of Christian clergy and teaching.

    Fortunately we still have the First Amendment though some in legal circles are trying to destroy religious freedom in this country by re-interpreting or by limiting it’s scope in some way. In this case, the city folks insist that LGBT civil rights should supersede it.

Leave a Reply