National Post – May 20, 2010
Heintz v Christian Horizons: Solomon would not approve
By Don Hutchinson
Even those not familiar with the Bible have some awareness of the famous “split the baby” decision of King Solomon. Two women came before the king claiming to be the mother of one child. Solomon called for a sword to split the child in two, knowing that the true mother would give up the child to spare its life. The Ontario Divisional Court appears to have made a similar attempt in its decision in Heintz v Christian Horizons. However, in today’s world, rather than that of Solomon’s, they have taken the baby away for five months and returned with two halves. …
For Christian ministries, this has the potential to be positive. The court decided that Christian Horizons is an organization of co-religionists associated to engage in common action for the good of others, which action would not take place without their association – an association established through a common statement of faith and a lifestyle and morality policy based on those beliefs. The court noted that in addition to the statement of faith of this ministry organization, the lifestyle and morality policy, referred to in Supreme Court of Canada decisions as the practices that have a nexus with sincerely held religious beliefs, was also acceptable.
So far, so good. But then out came the sword. The Ontario Divisional Court concluded that the job Ms. Heintz was doing was not impacted by her being involved in a same-sex relationship, contrary to the accepted practices of the faith community with which she was serving and contrary to her own signed acceptance of those practices before she started working there. Accordingly, they struck the “same sex relationship” provision from the lifestyle and morality policy of Christian Horizons, concluding Ms. Heintz had every right to work there.