Christian bakers face a huge fine for refusing to make wedding cake for a lesbian couple.
'Sweet Cakes by Melissa' in Oregon has reportedly taken a principled stand which could prove very expensive.
Owner Aaron Klein allegedly told lesbian to-be-wed Laura Bowman she was an "abomination unto the Lord" when she walked into the bakery to order a cake for her upcoming nuptials to her gay lover.
Bowman was also told her money was not as good as other customers, Aci Prensa news agency reported. The outburst by Klein reportedly left Bowman's partner in floods of tears.
After being refused a cake for her big occasion with her partner, Bowman went to complain to the state attorney general's office that Sweet Cakes was discriminating against her.
But Klein refused to bend his principles, by insisting gay nuptials go against the teachings of the Bible. He did not deny that he refused to bake a lesbian wedding cake.
Responding to the complaint against his shop, he hit back: "I am a Christian and I believe marriage is a religious institution between a man and woman as stated in the Bible," reported Aci Prensa.
"I don't think I should be penalized for that."
In Oregon same sex civil unions are permitted, but gay weddings are not. If found guilty of discrimination, 'Sweet Cakes' could face a fine of up to $50,000.
'Vatican Insider' reported it was not the first time that a row over wedding cakes had ended in the courts.
It claimed that a bakery in Lakewood, Colorado, was hauled before the courts afor refusing to bake a wedding for a same-sex wedding. Meanwhile, in New Mexico a wedding photographer was fined $7,000 for refusing to work at a gay wedding.