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Wedding venue refuses to host interracial couple because of owner's Christian beliefs

by Tola Mbakwe

In a now viral video filmed at Boone's Camp Event Hall in Booneville, Mississippi posted by the groom's sister, LaKambria Welch, the supposed owner of the venue said we "don't do gay weddings or mixed race because of our Christian race, I mean our Christian belief".

In the video posted on Saturday, Welch begins to ask the woman, "Well, we're Christians as well so, what in the Bible tells you that?" but the woman interrupts her, saying, "Well, I just don't want to argue my faith.

"We just don't participate, we just choose not to," she said.

On Monday Boone's Camp Event Hall apologised on Facebook before taking the page offline.

In the post the owner said growing up in Mississippi she was taught that people are supposed to stay "with your own race" but that after speaking with her pastor and researching the Bible she realised that her views were in fact unbiblical.

"I began to think about the history of my learning this and where it came from. I was unable to recall instances where the Bible was used giving a verse that would support my decision," she said.

"I have for many years stood firm on my Christian faith not knowing that biracial relationships were NEVER mentioned in the Bible!"

She added: "To all of those offended, hurt or felt condemned by my statement I truly apologise to you for my ignorance in not knowing the truth about this. My intent was never of racism, but to stand firm on what I 'assumed' was right concerning marriage."

In 2016, a law was passed in Mississippi that allows business to reject services based on their religious views.

House Bill 1523 also stops the government from intervening when churches or businesses act "based upon or in a manner consistent with a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction."

The bill was mainly focused at sexual orientation and same-sex marriage. Race was not a part of the bill.

In a statement provided to BBC News, the event hall said the bride forgave them and the couple has been re-invited to use the event space.

Interracial marriage legalised in the US in 1967 with Supreme Court decision Loving v Virginia.

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