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Trump administration protects Christian foster agencies

by Lynde Langdon
Posted 1/23/19, 02:40 pm

In a resounding victory for faith-based child placement agencies, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Wednesday said a South Carolina adoption and foster care agency can continue to work only with families that share its Christian beliefs. A letter from HHS to South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster granted Miracle Hill Ministries, which handles about 15 percent of the state’s foster care placements, an exception to the department’s nondiscrimination clause.

The South Carolina Division of Social Services, acting as an intermediary between federal and local agencies, threatened to cancel Miracle Hill’s license after the Obama administration broadened the HHS nondiscrimination rules in 2017. McMaster, a Republican, appealed to HHS in February 2018 on behalf of Miracle Hill for an exception to the nondiscrimination rules. Nearly a year later, the HHS letter grants relief to Miracle Hill and “any other subgrantee in the [South Carolina] Foster Care Program that uses similar religious criteria in selecting among prospective foster parents.”

“The government should not be in the business of forcing foster care providers to close their doors because of their faith,” Lynn Johnson, assistant secretary for the HHS Administration for Children and Families, said Wednesday. “Religious freedom is a fundamental human right.”

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Lynde Langdon

Lynde is a WORLD Digital's managing editor. She is a graduate of World Journalism Institute, the Missouri School of Journalism, and the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Lynde resides with her family in Wichita, Kansas. Follow Lynde on Twitter @lmlangdon.

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  • OldMike
    Posted: Wed, 01/23/2019 04:25 pm

    Praise God! that Miracle Hill Ministries has been granted the right to continue their work!

    But I’m sure it’s not over yet. I have no doubt the left will go on branding this and similar ministries as bigots, and won’t be surprised to see some judge reverse this. 

    I hope and pray President Trump can continue to appoint Judges who do not rule from their personal liberal agendas. 

  • Wayne Asbury
    Posted: Wed, 01/23/2019 05:39 pm

    This is REALLY good news. So glad to see this.

  • Judy Farrington
    Posted: Wed, 01/23/2019 10:20 pm

    Most Excellent!! Thank you President Trump and HHS! AND THANK YOU GOVERNOR MCMASTER!