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Sunday 30 April 2017

Anti-gay lodge doubles as Orthodox church

Posted in: New Zealand Daily News
By Daily News staff - 12th May 2013

Michael Ruskin holds church services at the lodge
The owner of the Whangarei lodge which turned a lesbian couple away runs an Orthodox church on the premises.

“Fr Dcn Michael Ruskin” holds services of the Antiochian Orthodox Church on Sunday mornings at Pilgrim Planet.

The lodge is also where Ruskin’s wife refused to give Jane Collison and Paula Knight a shared bed, and told them they best find somewhere else to stay.

Ruskin has since explained gay and lesbian couples are not welcome at the lodge, as “we don’t make provision for sodomy”.

The Lodge has now altered its website to read:
"Please note that we are not able to accommodate same sex couples in our home".

It’s also removed a mention of “guest-only” facilities.

The Antiochian Orthodox Church teaches that “all persons are entitled to a fundamental respect and treatment by others, simply because they are human beings, created in the image of God”.

It believes “the best prevention against the AIDS virus is virtue” and teaches that “homosexual behaviour” is a sin.

“In full confidentiality the Orthodox Church cares and provides pastorally for homosexuals in the belief that no sinner who has failed himself and God should be allowed to deteriorate morally and spiritually,” it states, in a piece entitled The Stand of the Orthodox Church on Controversial Issues.

An independent North American wing of the religion has even stated it believes same-sex desire “is likened to a handicap, a condition that necessarily closes off some choices that might otherwise be available, such as the paralytic who can't walk, or the deaf man who cannot hear”.

Collison and Knight have laid a complaint with the Human Rights Commission.

Meanwhile an outpouring of outrage continues on the lodge’s Facebook page.


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