Gay marriage warning after court rulings on Christian freedoms

A court ruling on the freedom of Christians in the UK today could be a sign of difficult times ahead for those with traditional beliefs about marriage, the Christian Institute has warned.

It has reacted with disappointment to the rulings from the European Court of Human Rights today, particularly that of registrar Lillian Ladele, who was supported by the organisation in her discrimination case.

Ladele, a registrar, was discplined by Islington Council, in north London, for refusing to register same-sex couples.

Her lawyers argued that the council should have made "reasonable accommodation" of her beliefs as the service could have been provided by other employees.

She lost her case by a majority of five to two judges.

Mike Judge, spokesman for The Christian Institute, said: "Obviously, we are disappointed to have lost. But we are encouraged that two judges thought we should have won.

"What this case shows is that Christians with traditional beliefs about marriage are at risk of being left out in the cold.

"If the Government steamrollers ahead with its plans to redefine marriage, then hundreds of thousands of people could be thrown out of their jobs unless they agree to endorse gay marriage."