Chantelle Day and Vicki Bodden Bush must put their wedding on hold, after a panel of three appeal court judges grants a stay of execution.
The couple, who successfully petitioned the court to overturn Cayman’s same-sex marriage ban was supposed to get married Wednesday (10 April). Instead, the wedding is in limbo pending the outcome of government’s appeal of Honourable Chief Justice Anthony Smellie’s decision to re-write the marriage law from the bench.
Opponents of same-sex marriage rejoiced on the courthouse steps, minutes after Court of Appeals President Sir John Goldring granted a stay of execution, preventing the Chief Justice’s decision legalising same-sex marriage from taking effect.
“We won this part of the battle but there’s another one ahead I’m sure,” said Pastor Marquis McLaughlin of Countryside Church of God in East End.
“They should be ashamed, wanting to tear down what the majority has voted for just to satisfy two spoiled little brats,” said Pastor Garrett Haylock of Church of God at West Bay.
Ms. Day and Ms. Bodden Bush held hands as the three-judge panel’s decision was read in the courtroom. Emotions ran high in the public gallery, with some shouting ‘praise the Lord,’ which drew one voice to counter, shouting back the word ‘bigots.’
Ms. Day and her partner refrained from comment as they made their exit from the courthouse.
Ms. Day’s father Michael said while the couple may have lost the battle today, he believes ultimately, they will emerge victorious from the war.
“People have got so much hate in their hearts, there’s nothing really to be scared of,” said Mr. Day.
Sir Goldring set a tentative date to hear the appeal for this August.
“Under the circumstances it’s not surprising that the court is keen to press on with this, so it’s in their hands now,” said Acting Solicitor General Reshma Sharma, who presented government’s case in the appeal.
With the matter again before the courts, Ms. Day and Ms. Bodden Bush’s long-awaited wedding is on hold pending the outcome.
“I can appreciate their dismay at not being able to get married this evening, sometimes life doesn’t go according to the way that we would like for it, the way that we have planned it,” said Kattina Anglin.
In explaining the appeals courts decision to grant the stay, Sir Goldring said the appellants seem to have clear and logical grounds for their case.
As noted earlier, the appeal is expected to be heard in August.