MOREHEAD, Ky. — A Kentucky clerk’s office has turned away two gay couples seeking marriage licenses, defying a federal judge’s order that dismissed her argument involving religious freedom.

Hours after the judge’s order to issue licenses to same-sex couples, Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis’ office still turned away the two couples, one after the other, on Thursday morning.

One of the couples that was turned away, James Yates and William Smith Jr., have been a couple for nearly a decade.

On Thursday morning, they described a disconnect between the clerk’s actions and their experience in the community of Morehead, a college town they say has long been open and accepting.

Davis has argued that her Christian beliefs prevent her from issuing licenses to same-sex couples. After the U.S. Supreme Court ruled gay marriage bans unconstitutional, Davis stopped issuing licenses to any couple, gay or straight.

Five couples sued her, and U.S. District Judge David L. Bunning on Wednesday ordered her to comply with the Supreme Court’s ruling.

On the street Thursday, gay-rights activists held signs reading “clerk not clergy” and “obey the law.”