Louisiana church fears gay wedding ceremonies so it boots AA just to be safe
gay marriage [AFP]

A Louisiana church has told a local Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) chapter that it can no longer hold meetings at the facility in an attempt to prevent LGBT people from getting married.


In a letter to the Keithville AA group, Westwood Baptist Church advised that the organization would need to find a new place to meet starting on Oct. 1, 2014, according to KSLA.

"As I am sure you are aware, God's church, his written word, and its values and principles have come under a constant and aggressive attack from the homosexual and lesbian community," the letter explains. "Churches and Christian businesses alike, across our nation, are being forced, by our legal system, to accommodate these groups in the use of their buildings/facilities to perform marriage ceremonies, receptions, etc."

The church argued that a court decision said that it must "also accommodate the homosexual and lesbian community" if it allowed other groups to use the building.

People Acting for Change and Equality political director Adrienne Critcher pointed out to KSLA that no one was trying to force churches to perform same-sex weddings, which are not legal in Louisiana.

"Even if we have legalized gay marriage throughout the country no church will be forced to marry gay people if they don't want to,” Critcher said.

According to Critcher, Westwood is citing a 2008 New Jersey case where a lesbian couple sued because they were not allowed to rent beachfront property for a same-sex civil union ceremony.

"It was property the church owned, they applied for a New Jersey program that was specifically for non-profits that could get their property tax exempt if they rented it out to the public," she noted, adding that the church had applied for the wrong type of tax exemption in that case.

"Unfortunately, Louisiana has no state wide protections for gay people so in the state of Louisiana, you can discriminate if you want to," Critcher remarked.

Watch the video below from KSLA, broadcast Sept. 25, 2014.

KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather