English teacher claims she was fired from her Christian school for being gay

English teacher claims she was fired from her Christian school for being gay
English teacher claims she was fired from her Christian school for being gay

An Anglican teacher claims she was fired from her Christian school because she is gay, and more like her will lose their jobs under new laws.

The school on Sydney's northern beaches allegedly dismissed English teacher Stephanie Lentz due to her sexuality 10 months ago.

Hours after Prime Minister Scott Morrison introduced a religious discrimination bill to parliament, Ms Lentz hit out on ABC's Q+A program.

English teacher Stephanie Lentz (pictured centre) says she was fired from her Christian school for being gay

English teacher Stephanie Lentz (pictured centre) says she was fired from her Christian school for being gay

'I really enjoyed the colleagues and the relationships with students, but in January this year the school fired me. And they fired me because I'm gay,' she said.

'They fired me because they disagreed with me that you can be Christian and also live true to the biological realities of your sexuality or gender.' 

The law Mr Morrison introduced seeks to exempt Australians who make 'statements of belief' from existing discrimination laws, but only if those statements do not 'threaten, intimidate, harass or vilify a person or group'.

The prime minister quoted Ephesians Chapter 4 from the Bible on the floor of Federal Parliament on Thursday to justify the bill.

'Religion and faith is also about humility and vulnerability. It is about love. It is about compassion. It is about speaking the truth in love, as the scriptures say,' he said.

North Sydney Liberal MP Trent Zimmerman, who is gay, said he was concerned about loopholes.

'The detail that I'm keen to have clarified is whether by allowing schools to put in place policies that can guide their employment,' he said.

'Whether there are any loopholes that could see effectively backdoor ways of setting rules in relation to hiring and firing teachers based on their sexuality or other personal attributes.'

Anglican Pastor Michael Jensen (pictured) replied 'It's complicated' when asked how situations such as Ms Lentz's could be resolved without jobs being lost under proposed new legislation

Anglican Pastor Michael Jensen (pictured) replied 'It's complicated' when asked how situations such as Ms Lentz's could be resolved without jobs being lost under proposed new legislation

Q+A host Stan Grant asked Ms Lentz if she was fired 'because you were gay or because you could no longer teach the ethos or the doctrine of that school? Had you offered to do just that?'

'I had offered to promote the school's ethos on sexuality,' she replied.

'Obviously, notwithstanding things that I believed would be harmful to the students, but I did offer to back the school's position on a lot of things.'

She claims the school - whose exact location she did not reveal - wasn't willing to discuss the matter and 'terminated my employment because of my sexuality and my belief that it's OK to be gay because God is cool with it'.

Her allegations sparked a heated debate on Q+A.

Anglican pastor Michael Jensen - a guest on the show - was asked how freedom of sexuality and religion could coexist and how situations such as Ms Lentz's could be resolved without jobs being lost under the proposed new legislation.

'It's complicated,' he replied. 'What we've got to do in an open society is got to make room for different types of view, different types of expression.'

Liberal MP for North Sydney Trent Zimmerman wants details of a proposed new law 'clarified'

Liberal MP for North Sydney Trent Zimmerman wants details of a proposed new law 'clarified'

Under the proposed legislation, religious schools and organisations would be allowed to give preference to and prioritise the employment of people from the same faith. 

The institutions would need to have a clear policy explaining how their religious views would be enforced.

Mr Jensen defended the right for religious institutions to employ who they want to.

PREV Miracle Aquaman: Tongan survives 28-hour swim after eruption, tsunami mogaznewsen
NEXT Social media blames People Magazine for jinxing Betty White with profile ahead ...