Let Justice Shine – Mary

15 December 2020

God delights in justice. As part of our Let Justice Shine series, we’re telling the stories of several people we’ve supported through the Christian Legal Centre and cases we’ve taken on, seeking and pursuing Godly justice.

As a Christian, Mary is convinced of the need to be salt and light in society. She loves to serve her local community.

For 15 years, Mary has been a Wiltshire councillor. During that time, she has not hidden her Christian faith, indicating on her election literature that she is a Christian.

In November 2019, Mary was part of a meeting considering funding requests from the local community. One such request was for £2,000 for a ‘Pride March’ in Salisbury. Mary opposed the request, carefully explaining that while she cares for people who identify as LGBTQ, she disagrees with the ideology behind Pride, and in any case does not feel that supporting such a march is an appropriate use of public funds.

But a local media report prompted two members of the public to complain to the council. They accused Mary of discrimination and said that her views were offensive and should not have been expressed.

Days later, the Leader of the Council abruptly removed Mary from her front-bench role as Portfolio Holder for Social Mobility and Skills. And the council started ‘Code of Conduct’ proceedings against her, alleging that she had ‘contravened the public sector equality duty’.

Mary turned to us for help, and our legal team supported her as she mounted her defence. A ruling against Mary would have been very concerning for freedom of expression, especially for people holding public office.

Wonderfully, in November 2020, Mary was fully exonerated by the council. Mary says:

“To be able to say what we think and believe is vital for democracy, community cohesion and good decision making.”

Please give thanks to God for this important victory for freedom.

At Christian Concern, we have the honour of seeking justice. As we approach Christmas, we are reminded once more of the message of King Jesus – that his ways are good for individuals and for society.
This advent, will you help us stand for justice?
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