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Christian bakery to appeal against Belfast court ruling

The Ashers bakery manager Daniel McArthur and his wife Amy last week (PA)

The Christian-run bakery found guilty for discrimination for refusing to bake a cake with a pro-gay marriage message is to appeal against the ruling.

Ashers bakery was forced to pay £500 after a court in Belfast ruled that it had discriminated against a customer on the grounds of sexual orientation.

The case had been pursued with the help of the Northern Ireland equality commission, which spent £39,000 in legal fees.

In a statement issued today, the McArthur family who run Ashers said: “After much careful and prayerful consideration given to legal advice, we have decided to appeal the judgement handed down last Tuesday.

“We continue to insist that we have done nothing wrong as we have discriminated against no individual, but rather acted according to what the Bible teaches regarding marriage.

“Our hope and prayer would be that an appeal will allow us and other Christians to live out their faith in Jesus Christ in every part of their lives, including their workplace.”

The case came about after the Ashers declined an order placed at its Belfast store in May 2014. Gay rights activists Gareth Lee had requested a cake featuring the Sesame Street puppets Bert and Ernie above the slogan “Support Gay Marriage”, and to feature the logo of Belfast-based campaign group QueerSpace.