Judge Rules Christian-Owned Banquet Hall Not Required to Host Gay Wedding

Russ Jones | Christian Press | Thursday, October 2, 2014

Judge Rules Christian-Owned Banquet Hall Not Required to Host Gay Wedding

A banquet hall in Pennsylvania has won a lawsuit concerning its refusal to host a same-sex wedding. According to LifeSiteNews.com, Barb Giarratano and her daughter Ashley sued The Inne of the Abingtons to refund a $1,000 deposit the family had put down to hold the facility. 

The couple requesting the refund wasn’t gay, yet the couple demanded the return of their deposit, which was nonrefundable under the industry-standard contract. The couple also demanded triple that amount as damages.

Through a social media site, it was discovered that John Antolick, the owner of The Inne of the Abingtons had previously refused to host a lesbian couple’s wedding.

“Discrimination goes against everything we believe in as a family,” Giarrotano told the Citizen’s Voice. “Our conscience wouldn’t allow us to invite our gay and lesbian friends and family to a wedding at a place they know openly discriminates against them.”

The Washington DEC-based Liberty Council represented the banquet hall.

On the day of trial, the judge agreed with Liberty Counsel that the suit was improperly filed and should be dismissed.

"We are happy to host dinners, birthday parties, or just about any other kind of event regardless of a client 's sexual orientation, but not a same-sex wedding," said Antolick, the owner of the Inne. He added, " I don't want to discriminate against anyone, but my conscience will not allow me to use my business to endorse an event that contradicts God's design for marriage."

Roger Gannam, senior litigation counsel at Liberty Counsel claims the ruling is a victory for religious liberty.

"A Christian business owner should not have his contracts dishonored or be hauled into court because he operates his business according to conscience,” said Gannam.

Publication date: October 2, 2014