Christian Family Beat Adoption Challenge

A Massachusetts couple who were prevented from becoming foster parents because of their adherence to Catholic teaching and their faith-based opposition to LGBT ideology and can move forward with their lawsuit after a federal judge rejected a motion to dismiss their case.

In his court order, the judge wrote that the decision of the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF) caused Mike and Kitty Burke to face a “fundamental dilemma in this case: they could renounce their religious beliefs and receive a foster license, or they could adhere to those beliefs and forfeit the license.” 

“This is a major win that is likely to have significant implications for Christian families in the Commonwealth and beyond,” wrote attorney Sam Whiting of the Massachusetts Family Institute. 

The Burkes, a Catholic couple who have struggled with infertility, applied to the DCF foster care program in 2022. They “underwent hours of training” and were recommended by their instructor for “positive contributions in the class,” according to a press release from Becket law firm.

During home interviews, the couple “emphasized their willingness to foster children from diverse backgrounds and with special needs” but “were troubled that much of the questions centered on their Catholic views on sexual orientation, marriage, and gender dysphoria,” the release continues, noting that the Burkes stressed that they “would love and accept any child, no matter the child’s future sexual orientation or struggles with gender identity.”