A mother in eastern Tennessee says she will appeal a court's decision that she can't name her son "Messiah," as a judge ruled that the "title has only been earned by one person, and that person is Jesus Christ," the Christian Post website reports today (August 12, 2013).
Jaleesa Martin and her husband -- who live in Newport, Tennessee -- went to the Cocke County Chancery Court after they couldn't agree on a last name of their seven-month-old baby, whom the mother had named Messiah Deshawn Martin. They never thought the child's first name would become an issue.
Child Support Magistrate Lu Ann Ballew -- who serves the 4th Judicial District of Tennessee -- ordered the child's name be changed to Martin Deshawn McCullough, so that it includes both parents' names and excludes the "title" Messiah. "The word Messiah is a title, and it's a title that has only been earned by one person, and that one person is Jesus Christ," Judge Ballew said.
Martin plans to take her case to the Cocke County Chancellor on September 17, and insists that it is her right to name her child as she wants to name him.