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Enoch Burke being led away by police, September 5, 2022.Video screenshot

DUBLIN, Ireland (LifeSiteNews) – A Christian teacher who refused to use a student’s transgender pronouns has been sent back to jail until February at the earliest after an Irish judge declined to expedite the hearing of his challenge to a court order preventing him from entering his place of employment. 

Enoch Burke was jailed on September 5 after refusing to comply with a court injunction barring him from teaching at or entering the grounds of Wilson’s Hospital School, a Church of Ireland boarding school in Multyfarnham, Co. Westmeath. 

At today’s Court of Appeal case-management hearing, the evangelical Christian reportedly told Mr. Justice John Edwards that he “shouldn’t be in that chair” after the judge refused to grant a hearing of Burke’s appeal sooner than February 16, 2023. 

Burke also questioned whether Justice Edwards was “colluding” with other the judges before whom the defendant had appeared. 

The teacher’s mother, Martina Burke, was escorted from the court by police when she declared her son was being “robbed of his rights” and that the court was “corrupt.”  

Yesterday, Ammi Burke, a solicitor and Mr. Burke’s sister, initiated defamation proceedings against the Sunday Independent on her brother’s behalf after the newspaper falsely claimed the teacher was moved from his cell for “annoying” other inmates. 

Ireland’s strict defamation laws have already prompted the Sunday Independent to remove the offending article, but Ms. Burke argued that countless other media outlets and social media platforms have broadcast the smear.  

Mr. Burke meanwhile has repeatedly refused to purge his contempt of court by promising not to attend his place of employment, a declaration that would have secured his release from jail but one he previously said would be giving in to “something wrong.” 

“I do think it a gross injustice that the plaintiff [Wilson’s Hospital] and the court is seeking to deny me my religious beliefs,” he told Ms. Justice Eileen Roberts on September 15. “I go back to jail as a law-abiding subject of the State but a subject of God first.” 

Burke’s refusal to comply with the school principal’s May 9 order to use a male student’s new name and “they” pronoun saw him placed on paid administrative leave on August 22. 

Upon Burke’s continued attendance at the school, he was then handed an interim order on August 30 to prevent him from entering the school. 

READ: New detransitioners group calls out ‘myth’ of ‘gender-affirming care’ in letter to Biden AG

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UPDATE (26th January 2023):

Enoch Burke is facing severe fines of €5000 per week if he backs down in his stand for the truth about gender ideology.

SIGN: We stand with this brave Christian in his defense of the truth 

Burke is facing a daily fine of €700 if he does not obey a court order barring him from attending the school he was fired from. 

Having spent 108 days in jail last year for his refusal to abide by the court order, he was officially fired last week by the Church of Ireland (Anglican) Wilson’s Hospital School in Co. Westmeath, Ireland. 

Responding to High Court Justice Brian O’Moore’s decision to fine the teacher €700 per day from Friday unless purges his contempt of the court order, Burke told reporters that the judge “wants to fine me for the profession of my religious beliefs.” 

“What has become of us as a nation, to fine somebody for their religious beliefs?,” Burke asked. “We’re at a time in this country where people are at their wit’s end, with the cost of everything as we know...and Brian O’Moore, a judge of the High Court, has sat down and said to himself that not only will you have to pay for all those things, but you now have to pay for your religious belief.”  

“He’ll make you a pauper for the profession of your religious belief,” Burke added.  

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The teacher declined to answer questions on whether he would continue to attend the school and face significant fines, or purge his contempt of court.  

An Evangelical Christian who taught German, history and politics at the school for four years, Burke has consistently maintained that to use transgender pronouns would violate his religious beliefs and that his subsequent suspension by the school, and the court orders against him, were therefore unjust. 

Jailed on September 5, 2022, Mr. Justice Brian O’Moore released Burke on December 21st, despite the teacher’s unwillingness to purge his contempt of the court order barring him from the school’s property. 

Mr. Justice O’Moore said today that he hoped the prospect of paying almost €5000 in fines every week would “end his (Burke’s) utterly pointless attendance at a school which does not want him on its property”. 

The judge warned however that the fines could be increased if they do not have the desired effect.  

Burke was fired by the school last Friday and has shown up at the school grounds for work each day this week, despite being arrested and released on Tuesday. 

He has until 2pm GMT on Friday to officially purge his contempt before the court or the €700 daily fines will begin to be applied. 

Mr. Justice O’Moore admitted today that it was not “immediately attractive” to jail the Christian conscientious objector again as he theorized that Burke had exploited media attention surrounding his imprisonment last year for his own ends, while the judge also considered the schools suggestion to sequester the teacher’s assets to be futile. 

Prior to his imprisonment, Burke told the High Court that “transgenderism is against my Christian belief.” 

“It is contrary to the Scriptures, contrary to the ethos of the Church of Ireland and of my school,” the teacher added. “I love my school, with its motto Res Non Verba, actions not words, but I am here today because I said I would not call a boy a girl.” 

“It is insanity that I will be led from this courtroom to a place of incarceration, but I will not give up my Christian beliefs,” he insisted. 

Burke also promised Mr. Justice Max Barrett on September 7th that he would “never leave Mountjoy Prison if in leaving that prison I must violate my well-informed conscience and my religious beliefs and deny my God. I consider it commendable that I chose to obey God rather than man.”

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Irish teacher Enoch Burke has been arrested and jailed after refusing to use a transgender student's preferred pronoun, "they", in the classroom.

This insane step by Irish authorities must be called out for what it is: the unhinged intimidation of an educator by demented ideologues.

Please add your name to our urgent message to the High Court today.

SIGN: Enoch Burke must be freed immediately as an educator who upheld the truth

Burke was suspended by his school for refusing to use the transgender pronouns of a student, even confronting his principal about the irrationality of the situation, and defying a subsequent court injunction barring him from performing his teaching duties.

He is now in Mountjoy Prison, Dublin after being brought before a judge on 5 September who found Burke to be in contempt of the injunction by attending work after his suspension.

Burke, who told the High Court “I am here today because I would not call a boy a girl”, made clear that he would not abide by the injunction because it would violate his conscience as a Christian.

“Were I to obey the order of the board of management and the order of the court, I would have to accept that sticking by my belief in male and female is wrong,” he said. “It is not something I will do. It is in violation of my conscience."

“Were I to go into the school and bow to something I know to be manifestly wrong, it would be a shame and a disgrace on my part,” he added.

This defiant attitude has now prompted Burke's arrest and imprisonment in an Orwellian debacle that should send warning signals to the watching world.

Mr. Justice Burke ordered Burke be "committed to Mountjoy Prison and remain therein until he purges his contempt or until further order of this court.”

Defending himself, Burke replied: “I cannot purge my contempt by holding my Christian beliefs in contempt."

Burke hugged his father and brother before being taken away by Gardaí to Mountjoy Prison.

Please share this petition with as many people as possible - it's clear that leftists will not tolerate dissent on this absurd issue unless we all push back.

SIGN: Enoch Burke must be freed immediately as an educator who upheld the truth

Thank you.

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Irish teacher jailed after refusing to use transgender pronouns - LifeSiteNews

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Burke, who teaches German, history, and politics, told the court that he refused “to call a boy a girl” as it was “manifestly wrong” and against his conscience. He continued to attend the school despite the injunction. 

Burke was then arrested for contempt of court on September 5 while sitting in an empty classroom in the school and taken directly to the court for a hearing. 

“My religious beliefs are not misconduct. They are not gross misconduct,” he told Mr. Justice Michael Quinn. “They never will be. They are dear to me. I will never deny them and never betray them, and I will never bow to an order that would require me to do so. It is just not possible for me to do that.” 

He added that upholding the biological reality of male and female could not lead to a charge of gross misconduct, and such a charge was the only thing which could lead to a suspension. 

“Transgenderism is against my Christian belief. It is contrary to the scriptures, contrary to the ethos of the Church of Ireland and of my school,” the teacher added. “I love my school, with its motto Res Non Verba, actions not words, but I am here today because I said I would not call a boy a girl.” 

Mr. Justice Quinn claimed that he sentenced Burke to prison based only on his contempt of court, not because of his beliefs, but with Burke sentenced to prison until he purges his contempt or the Court of Appeals finds in his favor next year, it remains unclear as to when the Christian teacher might be released. 

 

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