ICC Note: According to reports, Andrew Cash, a former master’s student at Missouri State University, was kicked out of the counseling program and lost his internship on account of his religious convictions. When presented with a hypothetical situation on whether he would provide counseling to a same-sex couple, Cash said that he would counsel them individually, but not as a couple. A lawsuit is being filed against the counseling department’s internship coordinator and various other university officials.
By Todd Starnes
04/03/2016 United States (Fox News) – Should Christians who oppose same-sex marriage based on religious beliefs be allowed to obtain degrees in counseling?
That’s the question at the heart of a lawsuit filed in federal court by a former student at Missouri State University who claims he was kicked out of a master’s program in counseling because of his religious beliefs.
Andrew Cash claims he was “targeted and punished for expressing his Christian worldview regarding a hypothetical situation concerning whether he would provide counseling to a gay/homosexual couple.”
MSU spokeswoman Suzanne Shaw told the News-Leader that the “university strictly prohibits discrimination on the basis of religion or any other protected class.” She would not comment on specifics of the case.
According to the lawsuit, Dr. Kristi Perryman, the counseling department’s internship coordinator, confronted Cash about his views toward counseling gay people.
Cash told her he would counsel them individually on a variety of issues but not as a couple. He said he would refer them elsewhere.
Cash explained to Perryman that his approach to counseling is centered on his “core beliefs, values and Christian worldview and these would not be congruent with the likely values and needs of a gay couple, who, for these reasons, would be best served by a counselor sharing their core value system and core beliefs,” the lawsuit states.