Billy Graham legal wins are ‘good news for the good news’
- – The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) has settled legal claims with three venues that tried to block its evangelistic rallies.
- – The three venues which tried to pull out of their contracts but have now agreed to host the BGEA tour are:
- 1. Exhibition Centre Liverpool
- 2. ICC Wales
- 3. Sheffield Arena
- – Today’s news follows a separate court win by the group in April this year in which the judge condemned Blackpool Council for ‘showing wholesale disregard for the right to freedom of expression.’ The Council had to pay BGEA £109K in fees and compensation.
- – Leader of the House of Commons Jacob Rees-Mogg previously referred to attempts to block the tour as “very intolerant”.
The Christian Institute has welcomed the news that, following legal action by the BGEA, three of the venues that attempted to cancel rallies by the Association have now agreed to honour their contracts. The tour will now go ahead in May 2022.
The BGEA took a series of separate legal actions after seven venues cancelled their bookings.
Simon Calvert, Deputy Director for Public Affairs at The Christian Institute said:
“You don’t have to agree with evangelicalism to know that banning Christian events over their theology is wrong. It’s also illegal. Christians are protected by equality law and human rights law. Any venue which cancels bookings by Christian groups over their beliefs can expect to lose in court. This is bad news for cancel culture but good news for the good news of Jesus Christ.”
Notes for Editors:
- – A Sheffield City Council spokesperson revealed last week: “The parties are content that the dispute has been resolved and are content with the confidential terms agreed. As part of that settlement, BGEA are entitled to hold their event in the Sheffield Arena and this event has been scheduled for May 25, 2022.”
- – Asked by the Local Democracy Reporting Service if a financial settlement was part of the action, the council said: “The parties have, with no admission of liability, agreed confidential terms for the settlement of the dispute.”
- – In February 2020, following a question from Fiona Bruce MP, Jacob Rees-Mogg said:
- “The UK has robust protections for freedom of speech and freedom of religion and the price of living in a free, plural society is tolerating views and beliefs we disagree with or are even offended by. This is fundamentally important. It is a sad truth that many people who tout themselves as being liberal are only liberal about what they like and are very intolerant of views they disagree with.”