The Universal Life Church Ministries announced that it has reached a settlement in its lawsuit against Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. The Church filed the suit alleging it had discovered that Allegheny County employees developed a practice of discouraging ULC ministers from solemnizing marriages. In accepting the settlement, the Judge ordered that the denial or discouragement of any ULC minister from solemnizing marriage is unconstitutional, and that Allegheny County must update its training practices to ensure that ULC ministers are not denied or discouraged from solemnizing marriages in the future.
SEATTLE, June 7, 2022 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- The Universal Life Church Ministries (ULCM) declared victory this week as it celebrated the successful settlement of a lawsuit it had filed against Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. In its suit, the ULCM alleged that Allegheny County officials and employees had repeatedly denied the ability of its ministers to solemnize legal marriages in the county.
In an order published late Monday, June 6, 2022, Judge J. Nicholas Ranjan of the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania entered a final judgment and order in Case No. 2:21-cv-618. The order states that any government practice that would deny or discourage the Universal Life Church and its ministers from solemnizing legal marriages would violate the 1st and 14th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.
He further ordered that Allegheny County must ensure that its employees are trained properly to understand that they must not reject the ordinations of Universal Life Church ministers or deny or discourage these ministers from solemnizing legal marriages.
The settlement and published order represent a major victory for the Universal Life Church and its ministers across Pennsylvania, where in recent years the ability of ULCM ministers to solemnize legal religious weddings has been called into question in some parts of the state.
The Universal Life Church Ministries is a nondenominational religious organization based in Seattle, Washington. It is perhaps most famous for its provision of ordinations online at its websites like http://www.ULC.org. The ULCM has ordained over 20 million ministers throughout its history. Many of those ministers go on to perform wedding ceremonies, in addition to other religious ceremonies and general ministry work.
Br. G. Martin, Universal Life Church Ministries, 1 2062851086, [email protected]
SOURCE Universal Life Church Ministries