A retired Virginia couple is suing their retirement community in federal court for what they claim is religious discrimination.
Kenneth Hauge, a retired Lutheran minister, and his wife, Liv Hauge allege that the retirement community management has threatened to evict them if they don’t stop hosting weekly bible study classes.
“Attorneys with the First Liberty Institute and Hunton Andrews Kurth, LLP filed the lawsuit…alleging religious discrimination in housing by the apartment's management.”
“The lawsuit filed…in federal court in Richmond accuses the management of The Evergreens at Smith Run, a retirement community in Fredericksburg, and its parent company, Community Realty Company (CRC), of discriminating against Kenneth Hauge, a retired Lutheran minister, and his wife, Liv Hauge, for hosting weekly Bible studies in the community room.”
According to CBN, “A retired pastor, Ken led the Bible study in his personal capacity at the request of other senior residents.”
In the lawsuit, Mr. And Mrs. Haugue claim the management of their community has even put pressure on them to stop saying ‘Grace’ before meals.
Lea Patterson, an attorney for the religious liberty nonprofit First Liberty Institute who is representing the Hauges, an attorney for the religious liberty nonprofit First Liberty Institute who is representing the Hauges, stated, “The management company's hostility to religious residents violates federal law and taints Virginia's long history of religious freedom.
“We're asking the court to hold the management company accountable for violating the Hauges' right to exercise their faith in their home and to ensure no other residents have to suffer through what the Hauges have endured,” Patterson explained.
What had begun as a sale gathering in the Hague’s own apartment, became so popular that its growth required they find another location big enough to accommodate everyone who wanted to participate.
“The [Bible] study grew so much that at one point they asked to use a community room. Their request was granted.
“But later they were told they couldn't hold the Bible study there.
Mr. and Mrs.Hauge have lived at the senior community since 2017. They are both in their mid-80s.