A California family has been fined $300 for violating city zoning codes … by holding Bible studies in their house. Charles and Stephanie Fromm have appealed the fine, but were told that more fines would be levied if the regular study groups continue without the Fromms obtaining a permit. A religious legal nonprofit has taken up the cause and says it’s a matter of religious freedom, while a city spokesperson insists that home Bible studies aren’t prohibited—it’s just that this is a special case.
"The Fromm case further involves regular meetings on Sunday mornings and Thursday afternoons with up to 50 persons, with impacts on the residential neighborhood on street access and parking," she writes to the Los Angeles Times. An attorney for the nonprofit, however, argues that properties on the Fromms’ street measure more than an acre, and parking is not inhibited by the gatherings. The city says that in order to continue holding the Bible studies, the Fromms would need a conditional-use permit.