Is Chick Fil A Mormon
Chick-Fil-A’S Business Model Is Largely Rooted In Its Owner’S Religious Beliefs
S. Truett Cathy, a devout Baptist, opened the first Chick-fil-A in Atlanta in 1967, and the chain has remained in his family’s hands ever since. Today there are more than 2,300 locations across the country — all of which are closed on Sundays. (“Having worked seven days a week in restaurants open 24 hours,” Chick-fil-A’s website reads, “Truett saw the importance of closing on Sundays so that he and his employees could set aside one day to rest and worship if they choose — a practice we uphold today.” A previous iteration of the website reportedly claimed the restaurant was closed on Sundays as a “testament to [Cathy’s] faith in God.”)
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“It was not an issue in 1946 when we opened up our first restaurant,” Dan Cathy, Truett’s son and the chain’s current CEO, said in a 2012 interview with the Baptist Press. “While developers had no identity whatsoever with our corporate purpose to ‘glorify God and be a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us and have a positive influence on all that come in contact with Chick-fil-A,’ they did identify with the rent checks that we wrote to the mall, based on our sales.”
That 2012 interview, in which Cathy was quoted as saying that he believes in the “biblical definition of the family unit” — i.e., that marriage should only be between a man and a woman — was the catalyst for a major national controversy. Cathy later tried to clarify his point in a radio interview: “As it relates to society in general,” he said, “I think we are inviting God’s judgement on our nation when we shake our fist at him and say, ‘We know better than you do as to what constitutes marriage.'”
The backlash to Cathy’s comments was swift. First a New York woman named Carly McGehee planned an LGBTQ kiss-in at Chick-fil-A restaurants across the country. It was scheduled for August 3, 2012. Then came the backlash to the backlash: Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee responded to McGehee’s plan with a “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day” scheduled for August 1. Thousands of people across the country bought chicken sandwiches in support of the Cathys and their mission, and Dan Cathy himself made an appearance at a Chick-fil-A location in Fayetteville, North Carolina, to thank customers for showing up.
But the 2012 incident wasn’t the first time the Cathys were accused of homophobia. A year earlier, a Pennsylvania Chick-fil-A’s decision to donate food to a marriage seminar conducted by the Pennsylvania Family Institute, a group known for its anti-gay advocacy, prompted a nationwide boycott of the chain. Cathy issued a video statement in response to the boycott, in which he claimed the company “serves all people” and that, while he personally believes in the “biblical definition of marriage,” his company doesn’t have an “anti-gay agenda.” And back in 2002, a former employee of a Houston Chick-fil-A sued the chain for discrimination. The employee, who was Muslim, alleged he had been fired because he refused to pray to Jesus with other employees. The suit was settled out of court.
These controversies also shined a light on the fact that the Cathys regularly made donations to charities known for discriminating against LGBTQ people.
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In 2011, the same year a Pennsylvania Chick-fil-A franchise donated food to a local anti-gay organization, the LGBTQ advocacy group Equality Matters obtained tax records which revealed that the Cathy family had donated more than $1.9 million to anti-gay groups in 2010 through the WinShape Foundation, the Cathy family’s charitable giving organization founded by Truett Cathy in 1984. Those donations included a $1.1 million gift to the Marriage & Family Foundation, a group that promoted so-called traditional marriage and opposed both gay marriage and divorce; $480,000 to the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, an athletic organization that requires applicants to agree to a “sexual purity statement” that condemns LGBTQ people for living “impure lifestyle[s]”; and $1,000 to Exodus International, a group that promotes anti-gay conversion therapy.
For Chick-fil-A’s opponents, the problem was bigger than Cathy’s anti-gay comments, it was that he was apparently putting his money where his mouth was, and he had a lot of money to go around.
Petitions and boycotts didn’t hurt Chick-fil-A — the chain continued expanding across the country despite people’s opposition to the Cathys’ views on marriage — but they did potentially contribute to making the Cathys somewhat less vocal about their political beliefs.
In a 2014 interview with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Cathy admitted he regretted getting involved in the gay marriage debate. Cathy didn’t claim to have regretted what he said, just that he said it. “I think the time of truths and principles are captured and codified in God’s word and I’m just personally committed to that,” he said at the time. “I know others feel very different from that and I respect their opinion and I hope that they would be respectful of mine. … I think that’s a political debate that’s going to rage on. And the wiser thing for us to do is to stay focused on customer service.”
The chain’s origin can be traced to the Dwarf Grill (now the Dwarf House), a restaurant opened by S. Truett Cathy, the chain’s former chairman and CEO, in 1946. The restaurant is located in Hapeville, Georgia, a suburb of Atlanta, and is near the location of the now-demolished Ford Motor Company Atlanta Assembly Plant, for many years a source of many of the restaurant’s patrons. 
In 1961, after 15 years in the fast food business, Cathy found a pressure-fryer that could cook the chicken sandwich in the same amount of time it took to cook a fast-food hamburger.  Following this discovery, he registered the name Chick-fil-A, Inc. The company’s trademarked slogan, “We Didn’t Invent the Chicken, Just the Chicken Sandwich,” refers to their flagship menu item, the Chick-fil-A chicken sandwich. Though Chick-Fil-A was the first national chain to make a quick-service, fried chicken sandwich its flagship item, several sources have demonstrated that Cathy’s much broader claim to have “invented the chicken sandwich,” which is referenced in the company’s slogan and has been repeatedly featured in press materials, is untrue. 
From 1964 to 1967, the sandwich was licensed to over fifty eateries, including Waffle House and the concession stands of the new Houston Astrodome.  The Chick-Fil-A sandwich was withdrawn from sale at other restaurants when the first standalone location opened in 1967, in the food court of the Greenbriar Mall in Atlanta. 
During the 1970s and early 1980s, the chain expanded by opening new locations in suburban malls’ food courts.  The first freestanding location was opened April 16, 1986, on North Druid Hills Road in Atlanta, Georgia, and the company began to focus more on this stand-alone type unit rather than on the food court type. Although it has expanded outward from its original geographic base, most new restaurants are located in Southern suburban areas. 
Since 1997, the Atlanta-based company has been the title sponsor of the Peach Bowl, an annual college football bowl game played in Atlanta on New Year’s Eve. Chick-fil-A also is a key sponsor of the Southeastern Conference and the Atlantic Coast Conference of college athletics. 
In 2008, Chick-fil-A became the first fast-food restaurant to become completely trans-fat free. 
On December 17, 2017, Chick-fil-A broke their tradition and opened on a Sunday to prepare meals for passengers left stranded during the power outage at Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, and on January 13, 2019, a Chick-fil-A franchise in Mobile, Alabama, opened on Sunday to honor a birthday wish of a 14-year-old boy with cerebral palsy and autism. 
On February 13, 2023, they began offering their first non-meat sandwich, a breaded cauliflower sandwich. 
In May 2023, Chick-fil-A announced that it would be permanently closing its first stand alone restaurant located in Greenbriar Mall, Atlanta. The company did not provide a reason for the closing. 
Chick-Fil-A’S Controversial Statements And Actions Regarding Lgbtq+ Rights
Chick-fil-A, a fast-food chain known for its chicken sandwiches and waffle fries, has been at the center of controversy for its statements and actions regarding LGBTQ+ rights. The company’s owners, the Cathy family, are known for their conservative Christian beliefs and have made several statements that have been perceived as anti-LGBTQ+. Here are some of the key instances that have sparked controversy:
Despite Chick-fil-A’s attempts to distance itself from controversy, the company’s stance on LGBTQ+ issues continues to be a source of tension. LGBTQ+ advocates argue that the company’s donations to anti-LGBTQ+ organizations perpetuate discrimination and harm to LGBTQ+ individuals, while supporters of the chain argue that it has the right to support organizations that align with its values.
Here is a table detailing some of the organizations that Chick-fil-A has donated to in the past:
As the controversy surrounding Chick-fil-A’s stance on LGBTQ+ issues continues, it remains to be seen whether the company will make any further changes to its policies and donations. However, the debate has highlighted the importance of supporting businesses and organizations that align with your values, especially when it comes to issues as sensitive and personal as LGBTQ+ rights.
Lgbtq Groups Are “Cautiously Optimistic” About The Change
LGBTQ rights groups like GLAAD say Monday’s news is a step in the right direction for Chick-fil-A, though they warn the chain is still far from inclusive.
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“Chick-fil-A investors, employees, and customers can greet today’s announcement with cautious optimism, but should remember that similar press statements were previously proven to be empty,” Drew Anderson, director of campaigns and rapid response for GLAAD, told The Goods in an emailed statement. “In addition to refraining from financially supporting anti-LGBTQ organizations, Chick-Fil-A still lacks policies to ensure safe workplaces for LGBTQ employees and should unequivocally speak out against the anti-LGBTQ reputation that their brand represents.”
As Anderson’s statement suggests, Chick-fil-A has promised to cut ties with anti-LGBTQ charities before. In 2012, the Chicago-based Civil Rights Agenda issued a statement claiming that Chick-fil-A had promised to “no longer give to anti-gay organizations, such as Focus on the Family and the National Organization for marriage.”
Chick-fil-A declined to comment on the matter at the time, instead issuing a boilerplate statement to BuzzFeed News:
“We have no agenda, policy or position against anyone. We have a 65-year history of providing hospitality for all people and, as a dedicated family business, serving and valuing everyone regardless of their beliefs or opinions. The genuine, historical intent of our WinShape Foundation and corporate giving has been to support youth, family and educational programs.”
But the company’s donations to anti-LGBTQ groups continued. As ThinkProgress reported in 2017, Chick-fil-A continued to bankroll anti-gay groups like the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the Salvation Army, and the Paul Anderson Youth Home through its foundation. Recent tax filings show that Chick-fil-A’s foundation donated $115,000 to the Salvation Army and $1.65 million to the Fellowship of Christian Athletes in 2018, though a company spokesperson told Bisnow that those donations were the result of multi-year commitments to each organization.