Christian adoption block bid fails
A woman has failed in a legal bid to prevent her two-year-old son being adopted by practising Christians who are not a "religious match".
The woman wanted to revoke an judge's order that the little boy should be placed for adoption and argued that a relative should be allowed to care for him.
But Judge Simon Wood has blocked her bid following a family court hearing in Newcastle upon Tyne.
Detail of the case has emerged in a written ruling by the judge published on a legal website.
The judge did not say what religion the woman or her ex-husband were - although indications in his ruling suggested that the family was Muslim.
Judge Wood said he had made an order placing the little boy for adoption 13 months ago.
He said social workers had matched the little boy with a Christian couple - who had been Muslims before converting.
The woman had applied to revoke the adoption placement order - and the judge said the "lack of religious match" issue had been raised.
But he dismissed the woman's application.
He said it might not be possible to find a "perfect" adoptive family for the youngster.
And he said "religion" would not "trump" other "positive" factors.
Judge Wood said the little boy had been "emotionally abused" by his parents, exposed to "volatile and violent" behaviour and provided with "seriously sub-standard parenting".
Assessments by social services staff had ruled out either parent as a carer, said the judge.
Social workers had also assessed more than a dozen other family members as possible carers - but ruled all of them out.
Judge Wood did not identify the woman, the little boy or the local authority which had begun care proceedings.
But he said family members in Bristol, Leicester, Luton, Bedfordshire and the North East had been assessed. He said one relative lived in South Shields, Tyne & Wear.
One family member not attended court because he was "at Mecca", said the judge.
"(The little boy) has ... been formally matched with a couple who are said to be practising Christians, having converted from Islam," said Judge Wood.
"That lack of religious match is something that is raised before me."
He said a "perfect match may be unachievable" and added: "Culture in its widest sense, but also including religion, was but one factor that would not trump other factors if they were all positive."