Attorney(s) appearing for the Case
Mr. Albert G. Besser and Mr. Leo Pfeffer, of the New York Bar, argued the cause for plaintiffs-appellants (Messrs. Hannoch, Weisman, Stern & Besser, attorneys; Mr. Leo Pfeffer, of the New York Bar, Mr. Albert G. Besser and Mr. Dean A. Gaver on the brief).
Mr. Edward Terner argued the cause for intervenor, Children's Aid and Adoption Society of New Jersey.
Mr. Mark F. Hughes, Jr., argued the cause as court-appointed amicus curiae.
Mrs. Joan W. Murphy, Deputy Attorney General, argued the cause amicus curiae for New Jersey Bureau of Children's Services (Mr. George F. Kugler, Jr., Attorney General of New Jersey, attorney; Mr. Stephen Skillman, Assistant Attorney General, of counsel; Miss Joan W. Murphy, Deputy Attorney General, on the brief).
Mr. Arnold Jay Gold argued the cause amicus curiae for Council on Adoptable Children (Mr. Barry G. Radick on the brief).
Mr. George A. Breur argued the cause amicus curiae for New Jersey Council of Churches (Messrs. Breur and Breur, attorneys; Mr. G. Thomas Breur and Mr. George A. Breur on the brief).
Mr. Charles B. Blackmar, of the Missouri Bar, submitted a brief amicus curiae for Department of Church in Society, Division of Homeland Ministries of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada, and Division of Human Relations, Board of Christian Social Concerns, United Methodist Church.
The Supreme Court of New Jersey.
The opinion of the Court was delivered by PROCTOR, J.
The county court denied plaintiffs' application for a final decree of adoption. The court held that plaintiffs' lack of belief in a Supreme Being rendered them unfit to be adoptive parents. The plaintiffs appealed to the Appellate Division, and prior to argument there, we certified the case on our own motion. We reverse.
On June 27, 1969, the plaintiffs, John and...
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