To Dr. Eric Walsh, his two roles were separate. On Sundays, he was a lay preacher for a Seventh Day Adventist congregation. During the week, he was a renowned public health expert for the state of Georgia. But now he says he's been fired by the state because of what he's been preaching on Sunday.
According to Fox News, religious liberty law firm First Liberty is representing Walsh in a lawsuit against the Georgia Department of Public Health because he said he was let go for preaching what the Bible says about homosexuality, marriage, and creation, among other topics.
First Liberty says that the Georgia Department of Public Health sent employees to sit in on Walsh's sermons and report back what they heard.
First Liberty attorney Jeremy Dys says, “The idea of those government employees dividing up the sermons is unthinkable. Religious liberty means we should be able to find sanctuary in our own sanctuary.”
While the department has not publicly replied to these allegations, pro-LGBT group Health Initiative strongly opposed Walsh's initial hiring, saying, “Dr. Walsh’s public displays of anti-gay propaganda and religious rhetoric will become symbols of the department and will further isolate an already vulnerable population."
Walsh himself says “I don’t believe I did anything wrong. This has been very painful for me. I really am a strong believer in the Constitution. But now I feel like maybe all these ideals and values that I was raised to believe — the ideals they country was founded upon — no longer exist.”