Christian teacher to remain in prison after refusing to comply with court order

Enoch Burke

A Christian teacher jailed for refusing to stay away from the school where he was suspended over his use of pronouns is to remain in prison.

Enoch Burke was suspended from his job as a teacher at Wilson's Hospital School in County Westmeath, Ireland, pending the outcome of disciplinary proceedings after he refused to use the pronoun 'they' for a transgender student.

A court order was granted to stop him from going to the school or attempting to teach there.

Mr Burke was arrested and sent to Mountjoy Prison in Dublin earlier this week after he continued to go to the school. 

A further injunction has been granted to the school after Mr Burke told the judge yesterday that he would not comply with the court order. 

Costs of the legal proceedings were awarded against him.

Another court hearing will be held next week. In the meantime, Mr Burke will remain behind bars.

He told the judge yesterday that he was prepared to spend "every hour of every day for next 100 years" in prison.

"If this court so determines, I will never leave Mountjoy Prison if in leaving the prison I violate my well informed conscience and religious belief and deny my God," he said. 

"It seems to me that I can be a Christian in Mountjoy Prison or be a pagan and respecter of transgenderism outside of it. I know where I belong.

"My faith has led me to that place and will keep me there, God helping me."