The Church of England and Church in Wales will be banned in law from offering same-sex marriages, the government has announced.
Other religious organisations will be able to “opt in” to holding ceremonies, Culture Secretary Maria Miller said.
But she added that the Church of England and Church in Wales had “explicitly” stated strong opposition and would not be included.
Labour said the exemption for the established Church was “disappointing”.
I can’t even make sense of that. The government is making it illegal, yet it’s an exemption. What? And the government is making it illegal because the churchs had stated strong opposition?
It gets worse.
Miller said the Church of England and Church in Wales had “explicitly stated” their opposition to offering same-sex ceremonies, so the government would “explicitly state that it will be illegal for the Churches of England and Wales to marry same-sex couples”.
She also said: “I am absolutely clear that no religious organisation will ever be forced to conduct marriages for same-sex couples, and I would not bring in a bill which would allow that.
“European law already puts religious freedoms beyond doubt, and we will go even further by bringing in an additional ‘quadruple legal lock’. But it is also a key aspect of religious freedom that those bodies who want to opt in should be able to do so.”
It’s a matter of religious freedom therefore the government is making it illegal for particular churches to do it.
So “religious freedom” here is taken to mean the government passing a law that the Top Bosses in the national church like, which will make it impossible for rebel churches to disobey the church’s Top Bosses.
That’s a funny understanding of religious freedom, if you ask me.
This is a good one –
Sir Tony Baldry, who speaks for the Church of England in Parliament, said: “For the Church of England, the uniqueness of marriage is that it does embody the distinctiveness of men and women.
“So removing from the definition of marriage this complementarity is to lose any social institution where sexual difference is explicitly acknowledged.”
Oh noes! Now there will be not one social institution where sexual difference is explicitly acknowledged – !! The horror!
But sure there will. Atheism. Gaming. Needlepoint.