Bethany Christian Services, a global nonprofit founded in Michigan in 1944 that currently operates in 35 U.S. states, has announced it will facilitate the placement of foster care children into gay and lesbian households in Michigan. The change will not impact other contracts the organization is currently is engaged in.
GRAND RAPIDS, Michigan, (LifeSiteNews) — Rather than take a stand for the biblical definition of marriage, Michigan’s largest Christian adoption agency waved the white flag last week, informing its employees that it will comply with a decision issued by the state’s lesbian attorney general that requires faith-based adoption agencies to place children in homes of so-called “LGBTQ” couples if they want to receive taxpayer funding.
Bethany Christian Services, a global nonprofit founded in Michigan in 1944 that currently operates in 35 U.S. states, has announced it will facilitate the placement of foster care children into gay and lesbian households in Michigan. The change will not impact other contracts the organization is currently is engaged in. Nor will it affect their privately funded infant adoption and international adoption services. The agency’s national board of directors voted to alter their Michigan policy on April 11.
Bethany’s decision to jettison its previous support of biblical marriage occurred less than three weeks after Michigan’s increasingly anti-Christian attorney general, Dana Nessel, unilaterally voided a package of bills passed in 2015 by the state legislature that carved out conscience protections for religious adoption agencies. At the time, Nessel, who is “married” to a woman, said the laws were a victory for “hate mongers.” Bethany’s board notified employees of its capitulation to Nessel’s demands on Holy Thursday last week.
Of the three major Christian adoption agencies in Michigan, Bethany handles by far the most adoption cases for the state. The group’s financial statements reveal that in 2016 and 2017, respectively, 62% and 65% of their operating revenue came from government reimbursements. According to MLive.com, Bethany was overseeing 1,159 cases, or 8% of the state’s approximately 13,000 adoption cases, as of February 2019. Catholic Charities handled 404 cases, or 3%, while the Lansing-based St. Vincent Catholic Charities had 80 cases, or less than 1%. St. Vincent recently announced it filed a lawsuit challenging Nessel’s coercive ruling, which has been strongly rebuked by social conservatives.
At present, 90 agencies receive state money to help adoption services in the state of Michigan.
“The mission and beliefs of Bethany Christian Services have not changed,” the group alleged in a statement. “We are focused on demonstrating the love of Jesus Christ by serving children in need, and we intend to continue doing so in Michigan.” Similar language is found on Bethany’s website, where it claims to “bring glory to God in everything we do” and to “make decisions that are consistent with Biblical principles.”