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Gay Minnesota Teacher Barred From Discrimination S


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Gay Minnesota Teacher Barred From Discrimination Suit

by 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff

Posted: August 29, 2005 12:01 am ET

(St. Paul, Minnesota) A Minnesota teacher forced to resign after it was learned he is gay cannot sue because he was employed by a faith based school board the state Court of Appeals has ruled.

Although Minnesota's Human Rights Act bars discrimination against gays and lesbians there is an exemption for churches.

The teacher, known only as "John FR Doe" in court papers, was employed by Lutheran High School of Greater Minneapolis, which is affiliated with the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. He is also a Lutheran pastor, the court filings show.

When he was forced to resign in 2002 as both a teacher and a pastor at the school he sued, arguing he should be able to continue in his position because part of his work was secular in nature. He also argued he was celibate and did not speak openly about his sexuality.

The Court of Appeals upheld a lower court ruling that said because the Lutheran Church believes homosexuality is "intrinsically sinful" the school had the right to force his resignation.

"Doe's assertions that he should not have been discharged based on his sexual orientation would require the court to analyze and apply church doctrine to assess his argument," the three judge ruling said. "We must conclude that this type of searching inquiry intrudes into church doctrine."

Earlier this month a national meeting of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America voted to maintain the ban on gay clergy and same-sex unions. (story)

©365Gay.com 2005


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