Council to reconsider Christian couple's adoption offer
A council will reconsider a Christian couple's offer to adopt their foster children, following involvement from the Christian Legal Centre.
The couple were initially told they could not adopt the children, because of their "concerning" views about same-sex parenting.
But the local council this week recognised that the initial rejection was wrong and agreed to reconsider its assessment. The couple will now be assessed by someone outside the council.
Children's best interests
The couple has been providing foster care to two young children since early this year. Reports from social workers praised them for their "lovely care", and stated that they "worked well with all professionals".
As Christians, the parents believe that a child's best interests are served by having 'a mum and a dad' wherever possible.
When a social worker told them that a same-sex couple were being considered as adoptive parents for the children, the couple expressed surprise and concern. They then reiterated their offer to adopt the children themselves, arguing that this would be the "best option for them and their emotional well-being"
But the council rejected their offer to adopt, saying that their views on same-sex parenting were "concerning" and "could be detrimental to the long term needs of the children."
'We are a loving, caring and stable family'
In the parents' letter to the council, requesting that they review their decision, they stated:
"We are Christians and we expressed the view that a child needs a mother and a father. We expressed our views in modest, temperate terms based on our Christian convictions. We love everyone (regardless of sexual orientation) and we love the children and believe that they would benefit from the foundation offered by a mother and a father.
"The decision appears discriminatory to us and not related to the children's needs. The children love us: we love them. All the reports show that we are a loving, caring and stable family. What more could a child need?"
'Significant step forward'
The Christian Legal Centre is supporting the couple and has been working with them and the council to resolve the situation.
The council's recognition that the initial decision was wrong and agreement to reconsider the couple's application is a significant step forward.
'Still a long way to go'
After the council initially rejected the couple's offer to adopt, Andrea Williams, Chief Executive of the Christian Legal Centre, said:
"This couple's viewpoint is lawful and mainstream. The expression of a view that a child needs a mother and a father cannot justify a refusal to even consider a married couple's application to adopt. The separation of this couple from the children at this time is unthinkable."
Commenting on the new development, she said:
"We are encouraged by the progress made this week, and grateful that the council has recognised its mistake and adopted a more appropriate stance. It is a step in the right direction.
"These developments highlight the value of Christians standing together, and where appropriate exposing the challenges that people are facing.
"There is still a long way to go, and we will continue to stand with this couple. Please pray with us that these young children are able to stay with them."
Please continue to pray
Please give thanks with us for this encouraging development and pray that the couple will be able to adopt the children in their care.
Christian couple blocked from adopting because of their belief that children need mum and dad
Adoption banned in 'gay parents' row (Times £)
Christian couple refuse to give foster children to gay parents (Independent)
Christian couple barred from adopting after 'gay parents' row (Christian Today)