Feb 25: Sexual orientation discrimination suits, the Olympics, Billy Graham and more

Executive Branch

A lesbian couple in Texas filed suit against the federal government after being refused refugee foster child placement by Catholic Charities. Catholic Charities is under contract with the HHS and the Office of Refugee Resettlement.

Complaints to the HHS by healthcare providers about restrictions on religious freedom spiked after the creation of the Conscience and Religious Freedom Division last month. There have been 300 complaints so far, compared to 34 in November 2016.

50 States

An appellate court in Hawaii upheld a ruling against a bed and breakfast for refusing service to a lesbian couple because of their sexual orientation. The owner of the B&B argued that her religious views prevented her from letting the room.

The Governor of South Carolina announced he is working to obtain a waiver for a faith-based foster care provider that requires all foster parents to be Christian. The organization was told by the state’s Department of Social Services that it is violating state and federal regulations.

State legislatures began debating bills that would classify same-sex marriages as “parody” marriages.


A football coach in Louisiana filed suit alleging that he was not hired because of his Jewish heritage.

A public school teacher in Detroit filed a lawsuit alleging that she was fired for wearing a hijab.

Other reads

Billy Graham died on Wednesday, drawing tributes from political and religious leaders. His passing also prompted reflection on his involvement in politics, his background and rise to prominence, and his evangelical legacy.

The Religion News Service covered the missionary efforts by different denominations at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.