August 23rd, 2010
08:52 PM ET

Texas school rejects 4-year-old over lesbian parents

A private religious school in Texas has denied admission to the daughter of a lesbian couple who wanted to enroll the child in preschool, citing its "clear teaching of the Christian faith" for the refusal.

In a statement e-mailed to CNN sister network HLN, the dean of St. Vincent's Cathedral School in the Dallas suburb of Bedford, Texas, said the school is standing on its principles "in matters of marriage and sex outside of marriage" by refusing to seat 4-year-old Olivia Harrison.

"St. Vincent's School as a ministry of St. Vincent's Cathedral upholds the clear teaching of the Christian faith, the Holy Bible, and the Anglican Church in North America," the Rev. Ryan Reed said.


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Filed under: Gay and lesbian • Religion
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  1. Dawn Robbins

    I was raised in the same religion, but in my church and every bible i've read taught me that we are not to judge, God is the only one we will answer to on judgement day. Its very sad that these "christians" dont practise what they preach and thank god that child will not be subjected to the hypocricy of that establishment!

    August 23, 2010 at 11:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jerad

      You need to re-read your Bible. That is not what it says at all. Don't take any one verse out of the context of the entirety of the chapter, book, and situation it is talking about. That's a typical protestant problem using individual verses out of context. You can't live without judging. Every decision every action you perform during your day requires a judgement of right or wrong and what to do. The warning and it was very clear was to judge rightly and fairly because as you judge that same standard you use will be applied to you. In other words use mercy and understanding, don't be overbearing and harsh. Read what he actually said.

      August 26, 2010 at 10:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • MsScience

      @ Jerad

      I'm an atheist, but I went to a private Christian middle school, so I read the Bible in full. The Bible is actually pretty clear that we have no right to judge.

      Matthew 7

      1Do not judge others, then you will not be judged.
      2The way you judge others, that is the way you will be judged. How much you give to others is how much will be given to you.
      3`Why do you look at the spot of dust in your brother's eye? But you do not see a big stick in your own eye!
      4Why do you say to your brother, "Let me take the dust out of your eye"? And all the time you have that stick in your own eye!
      5You are not true to yourselves! First take the stick out of your own eye. Then you will be able to see to take the dust out of your brother's eye.

      August 27, 2010 at 1:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • wichart

      @Dawn and MsScience

      This is one of the many topics in the Bible that can be very confusing to the casual reader. On the one hand, you have Jesus telling some people not to judge. On the other hand, you have almost the entire book of Leviticus telling us exactly how to judge and punish for committing any of about 800 crimes. The trouble with using the Bible to justify one's beliefs is that the Bible is full of contradictory statements and themes. What people generally do is find whichever verses support their existing beliefs and ignore those that don't. BTW, I believe the quoted verses from Matthew 7 are being interpretted correctly by Jerad. They're essentially saying "don't be a hypocrite".

      August 27, 2010 at 6:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Victoria

      My God some of you people are so ignorant and closed-minded it makes me want to LEAVE this country, supposedly the land of the free! If you think God wants you to treat others -created in his image just like you- then you are practicing something other than Christianity. Dawn you are absolutely right that we have NO right whatsoever to judge ANYbody. What makes one person better than another besides your own personal word vouching for yourself? Yeah, that's a great reference. I don't think Jesus suffered and died on the cross so that we could judge each other. That is God's job. So much negativity stems from prejudice due to ignorance.The Bible was divinely influenced, however, like many people today, any group of people will bend the words to work for them. I am not claiming that I am a scholar on Scriptures but I was educated in perochial schools from fourth grade until I graduated from high school, but I do not label myself a Christian. I was an altar server for ten years at my Roman Catholic church,which I love and consider many of them part of my extended family, but there are so many great qualities about other religions such as Buddhism, Taoism, Islam, Hinduism,etc. Life is a whole lot easier without dragging around prejudices and judgement.

      @B-Dog: Sorry but you give Americans the bad rep we have. You just fuel the fire.That's just one of the many reasons I hate Texas and would never want to live there is because of all of the inacceptance and I am none of those things you listed. The root of evil in the world comes from greed and a dissatisfied ego. Communism, like socialism, is nice in theory but not very realistic because that would entail necessary cooperation from all parties. From what you say you may as well admit being an imperial wizard of the KKK. And I think the last time America could be considered Anglo-Saxon was...mmmm never since they were European. Died out in the seventh century at the latest. Well, have a nice day! 🙂

      August 28, 2010 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Clearly

      You're absolutely correct.

      Isn't it hard to watch all of these so-called "Christians" commit heresy again and again by claiming to know the mind and will of God?

      August 28, 2010 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • wichart


      I find it interesting that you can see the inherent flaw in the concept behind Communism, but you can't see the SAME FLAW in the philosophy of nobody judging anyone else. Regardless of how you choose to misinterpret the Bible, we all must judge other people all the time. This is what keeps us from doing things like allowing a pedophile to babysit our children or allowing a guy like Bernie Madoff to manage our money.

      I believe a religious upbringing actually hurts you when it comes to correctly interpretting the Bible. Most religious people think of the Bible as a single, internally consistent book that has relevance in our modern world. In truth, it is a collection of stories and letters that were written for specific audiences at specific times and in specific places. None of the authors wrote these books for you and me. They wrote them for their own communities in their own time. Once we take the stories out of the author's intended context and try to apply them to our own lives thousands of years later, we really create a completely separate story that is different from what was written by any of the authors.

      Now, if we get back to the specific example of Matthew 7:1-5, we can plainly see that Jesus is telling his apostles not to be hypocrites about judging other people ("first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye"). Implicit in that statement is the idea that if you lead a righteous life then you are free to judge the righteousness of others.

      August 29, 2010 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
  2. jean

    I understand the schools point of view but I would have preferred they take in the student and reform his ideologies opposite from those of his parents.

    August 24, 2010 at 5:35 am | Report abuse |
    • wichart

      Interesting. I'm curious to know how you would feel about your children's school doing the same thing to you and yours. Brainwashing children doesn't become OK just because they're being brainshwashed into believing the same things you believe.

      August 27, 2010 at 6:19 pm | Report abuse |
  3. tonysold

    What the difference between religious people and nazis?
    They are about the same! They love to discriminate they are in a box, people outside their box are bad people. They promote hate!!!!!!!!!!
    Be a good human being, love everybody. get away from these ridiculous people!!!!!

    August 24, 2010 at 9:52 am | Report abuse |
  4. jim Hemphill

    The church should hold with its principals!!!

    August 24, 2010 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
    • dalis

      PrincipLEs. Principles.

      August 24, 2010 at 10:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike_V

      the principle of love all: EVERY 4 year old child

      August 30, 2010 at 9:15 am | Report abuse |
  5. cjvwise1

    These women should be charged with exploitation of a child!!!!! Turning a young child into a political tool is outrageous. I am all for womans' rights and try to keep an open mind, but I am first a mom. Why do we keep letting people with personal agendas parent without stepping in to say, "Being a parent does not give you the right to abuse your power over a child!" It is a private school! There is no other motivation but to promote a law suite using the child as bait.

    August 24, 2010 at 11:01 am | Report abuse |
    • Debbie

      Great point!!!!! I firmly believe that this is what they are doing.

      August 24, 2010 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ian K

      ...Maybe they just wanted to get their child off to the right start with some early schooling. Have you ever thought about that? Maybe someone doesn't have an ulterior motive for once, maybe they actually did just want to do what's right for their child. Or maybe you just can't accept that someone different from you actually is capable of thought and action.

      Get over yourself and stop being so paranoid that other people are trying to force political views on you.

      August 27, 2010 at 6:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • j

      Interestingly enough,these two women are not a couple anymore,they broke several months ago when it was discovered that Jill had been having an affair with a married man.I don't agree with the schools choice,all children deserve an education,but I think that people should know that at least one of these women is a bald faced liar and her version of events is not to be trusted.

      August 27, 2010 at 8:16 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Danielle

    This school needs to read their Bible God said " Thou shall not judge, for thou shall be judged." My advice for them is just love one another thats the only Commandment that Jesus left us. All others have been covered by his blood. So unless they want to be judged for this by God they really need not judge others. God loves children most of all and anyone that hinders these children from learning about Him will face serious judgement.

    August 24, 2010 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • rrt

      Please tell me how you interpret defending one's beliefs as judging?

      August 24, 2010 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • wichart

      Danielle, perhaps you'll want to re-read the Bible too. You see, it contains many contradictory claims, and Paul's claim that the Mosaic Laws no longer matter because of Jesus's sacrifice happens to be one of the biggest. Matthew 5:17-18 says “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished”. Now, I'm an atheist so I believe this is all bunk, but if I were a believer, I would take the supposed opinion of Jesus over the supposed opinion of Paul on any and every subject.

      August 27, 2010 at 6:38 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Debbie

    I really feel that it is the choice of the school. The parents should have read what the school requirements were. It is sad that we do not give a faith that has been a part of our culture the benefit on their beliefs, but then we give the utmost concerns for Muslim Mosques the benefit to stand in the rhelm of a site that so many people lost their lives who stood for our country and beliefs. This couple seems to have just wanted to stir up issues where people would have to criticize the beliefs of the church. There is no reason why they could have not respected the churches beliefs!

    August 24, 2010 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kendra

      Muslims died in the Twin Towers as well as members from every other faith. I am sorry that this school is not admitting the child to learn based on the school's belief's toward the lesbian community. Overall, this an issue of a private school, they get to decide who attends. I fell it may be better for the child to go to a welcoming environment. The parents being lesbian are a non-issue to me, I think relationships between two consulting adults is fine.

      August 27, 2010 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Jan

    I understand now why Ann Rice is no longer a Christian. Also, if this school is publicly funded in any way – that funding should be taken away. The school should be more concerned about giving their students the best education possible – not showing just how intolerant they are.

    August 24, 2010 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • rrt

      Many religious based schools are not federally/state funded. Anne Rice is still a Christian- she just doesnt affiliate herself to any specific organization.

      August 24, 2010 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Sandy

    cjvwise 1, you are so right. It's not about the child but the attention to themselves. There are plenty of excellent schools that will take the child, why this one except for the limelight.

    August 24, 2010 at 1:59 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Teri Frenchak

    As a born again evangelical Christian, I would ask that school one question: WWJD? This is exactly what gives Christians bad names. As a Christian we are called to follow the example of Jesus by hating the sin, but loving the sinner. Shame on that private school!!!

    August 24, 2010 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
  11. tonysold

    Why religious people are so narrow minded!. Now they blame the parents.
    IS THE CHURCH THAT DISCRIMINATE THAT CHILDREN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 24, 2010 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
  12. tonysold

    Religious CHRISTIANS!
    You are NOT christians!!!!!!!!!! You hide yourself under Jesus. It does not means you are christians!!!!!!Jesus would never discriminate anybody.

    August 24, 2010 at 2:25 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Eric

    The parents of this child must have certainly been aware of the school's reputation before attempting to enroll their child. What's more, one has to question why they would want their daughter exposed to such dogma that clearly conflicts with their own life. How would that be healthy or constructive for their daughter? This simply doesn't make any sense, except as a deliberate stunt to garner media attention.

    August 24, 2010 at 2:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • MagicConchShell

      Exactly what I thought as well.

      August 27, 2010 at 3:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thinker

      Funny I have known I was gay since I was a child. I was educated in catholic schools, and still I'm gay. and saying they should take the child in and lead her down the "right" path reeks of elitism. There is no sin in being gay. You are born that way. There is sin in chosing to be a bigot

      August 27, 2010 at 4:02 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Mitch

    The school need to be consistent with it's beliefs, and it did the right thing. The parents have a choice on which school they attend, and they choose who that they knew didn't agree with them. They were using the kid to make a statement, and that's wrong.

    The church isn't discriminating against kids.

    And you are judging other by saying they are not Christians. This is a good example of someone not understanding what judging is.

    August 24, 2010 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
  15. AR377

    All of you who are acting like you know what was going on in the minds of the powers that be at this school are making assumptions.

    First of all, they are a private school. Therefore, they can do what they like.

    Second of all, how do you know it was simply because the parents don't live the life that the bible says you should? Frankly, if that were the case, I seriously doubt there would be many students in that school because we are all sinners, no one of us anymore than the other. THAT'S what the bible says.

    Personally, I think it could be that they were concerned about lawsuits if the child DID go to school there. Given their doctrine, they knew their teachings weren't in alignment with what the parents believed and would ultimately result in conflict. Therefore, they could have just decided to forgo it altogether and not allow the child to go to school there, which is completely within their right.

    August 24, 2010 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
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