• Tuesday, December 10, 2019

UK Supreme Court judges allow Scientology wedding

Discussion in 'Europe & Russia' started by livingdead, Dec 12, 2013.

  1. livingdead

    livingdead ELITE MEMBER

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    A woman who wants to marry in a Church of Scientology chapel has won her Supreme Court challenge.

    Five Supreme Court judges ruled the church was a "place of meeting for religious worship".

    Louisa Hodkin launched legal action after officials refused to register a Church of Scientology chapel in central London as a place for marriage.

    This was due to a 1970 High Court ruling which said Scientology services were not "acts of worship".

    Evolution of beliefs
    In their unanimous decision, the Supreme Court justices said that the 1970 ruling's definition of religious worship as involving "reverence or veneration of God or of a supreme being" was out of date.

    "Religion should not be confined to religions which recognise a supreme deity," wrote Lord Toulson, giving the judgment.

    "To do so would be a form of religious discrimination unacceptable in today's society," he wrote, noting that the criteria would exclude Buddhism, among other faiths.

    The court said it was not the job of the Registrar General of Births, Marriages and Deaths to venture into "fine theological or liturgical niceties" and declared that the Scientology chapel should be recorded as a place for the solemnisation of marriages.

    Miss Hodkin says she and fiance Alessandro Calcioli hope to marry in the next few months but are yet to set a date.

    "It's been a long and demanding journey, but the Supreme Court's decision has made it all worthwhile. We are really excited that we can now get married, and thank our family and friends for all of their patience and support," she said.

    Mr Calcioli added: "I think the court's definition of religion is excellent. I think it's what most people today would understand 'religion' to be. I'm ecstatic."

    'Very concerned'
    Miss Hodkin's solicitor Paul Hewitt, a partner at law firm Withers, said the judgment was a "victory for the equal treatment of religions in the modern world".

    "We are delighted at the outcome - it always felt wrong that Louisa was denied the simple right, afforded to members of other religions, to enjoy a legal marriage ceremony in her own church," he said.

    The court heard that Miss Hodkin's brother, David, was married at the Church of Scientology in Edinburgh, a valid marriage under Scots law because the registrar general for Scotland authorises ministers of Scientology to perform marriages in Scotland.

    Miss Hodkin had argued that the 1970 ruling should not be binding because Scientologist beliefs and services had evolved and likened it to Buddhism and Jainism.

    Local government minister Brandon Lewis said he was "very concerned" about the ruling and its implications for business rates.

    He said Labour ministers had promised during the passing on the Equalities Bill before the 2010 General Election that Scientology would continue to fall outside the religious exemption for business rates - but now could be eligible for rate relief.

    "We will review the court's verdict and discuss this with our legal advisers before deciding the next steps. However, it will remain the case that premises which are not genuinely open to the public will not qualify for tax relief.
     
  2. Developereo

    Developereo ELITE MEMBER

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    It's fashionable in the media to bash Scientology, but I feel they should be let be.

    They are not harming anyone, and mind their own business for the most part.
     
  3. Audio

    Audio SENIOR MEMBER

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    lol........a small sample:

    Scientologists facing fraud and extortion charges in Belgium after police probe into 'criminal organisation' | Mail Online

    Or if you perhaps followed the Katie Holmes/Tom Cruise fiasco, details leaked of immense pressure being put on Holmes not to divorce, as it would cast a bad light on the church. poor girl had to run to her lawyer father, they scared her so much with threats of repercussions.
     
  4. livingdead

    livingdead ELITE MEMBER

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    The judge laid down some parameter to check whether it is a religion(based on existing religions) and scientology seems to tick enough boxes to call it a religion.
    It will be treated as such and will get all benefits like tax breaks which other places of worship gets.
    As to being a criminal organization, the charges are not proved, and the defence of other organized religion applies to them (its not scientology thats the issue, its the followers).
     
  5. Ayush

    Ayush SENIOR MEMBER

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    good decision :tup:
     
  6. Developereo

    Developereo ELITE MEMBER

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    Oh, the horror!

    Compared to the history of other established religions, these guys are lambs.
     
  7. Audio

    Audio SENIOR MEMBER

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    Exactly. All organized religion should be abolished, even the "innocent" newcomers.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/28/w...dxnnlx=1256709765-Q0YNb5qph2q2KIXqqey3Jw&_r=0

    Note convicted, note branch not members. ;)
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2013
  8. livingdead

    livingdead ELITE MEMBER

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  9. Audio

    Audio SENIOR MEMBER

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    Because it's a pyramid ponzi scheme in disguise.
     
  10. scrumpy

    scrumpy FULL MEMBER

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  11. vostok

    vostok PDF THINK TANK: ANALYST

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    This was expected. Sooner or later the West recognize Satanism as religion. And equate God to the Devil.
    Civilization perishes when abandoning its roots. Europe will die by refusing Christianity. That Christianity made great European nations the great European nations.
    People will always need faith. And if they can not find answers in Christianity, which dies, they will find the answers in other religions.
    And it will not be Europe any more.
     
  12. livingdead

    livingdead ELITE MEMBER

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    dont dramatise the news, some scientology followers wanted to marry in their own church. If you believe in equality (apparently a christian virtue) you will have to give then that right.
    Vast majority dont go to church anyway and unlikely to go to scientology church as well.
     
  13. vostok

    vostok PDF THINK TANK: ANALYST

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    I believe in equality but not sameness.
    God gave every nation a special path to Himself. To Europeans He gave Christ. If Europe refuses Christ - it will be punished and no longer be Europe.
    The USSR was perished exactly for this - for the destruction of churches and killing priests by Trotskyists in the 20-30-ies.
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2013
  14. Evren

    Evren FULL MEMBER

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    My good friend is a scientologist and people have the wrong idea of the belief system. In the UK, no matter how many religions propagate their beliefs, you can never separate the Church from the history of Great Britain and all her rulers.

    For example, we associate democracy with Westminster and parliament square, but what most people outside the UK don't know is right next to Parliament square sits Westminster Abbey, Westminster Abbey is especially important in British history because it is where all Kings and Queens are Coronated.
    [​IMG]
    Part of the British Coronation ceremony is the anointment, which is done in secret using holy oil and is liked back to medieval times, where the monarch was directly appointed by GOD himself. And even when Queen Elizabeth II passes away the new King be it King George or King William be anointed in the same fashion.

    It is this strong sense of tradition and continuity that makes the Church and it's role in British History so very crucial. That said, it is heart-breaking that there are more temples, reading rooms and mosques than they are churches in the U.K, this is proof of the level of tolerance and acceptance in the British people.