Proposal could divide Christians
THE Government's proposal to allow same-sex marriages in religious buildings risks not only splits within the Christian Church, but also splits within the ranks of the Conservative Party itself.
Those Conservative Party members supporting the sanctity of marriage being between a man and a woman, family values, etc must be absolutely incensed at such a proposal becoming law.
I have no doubt that some of the Conservative Party members who are threatening to vote against such a proposal becoming law will have to ask themselves whether or not they can stay within the rank and file of Conservatism, or risk defecting to Ukip or other parties, or even tabling a vote of no confidence in David Cameron's leadership of the party.
Also, if the proposed legislation does become law, will individual priests, vicars, pastors and ministers retain their right to refuse same-sex marriages within their individual churches?
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Will Catholic priests and Church of England vicars be subject to the will of their diocesan bishops to allow same-sex marriages in their churches and have the right of appeal to Canterbury, York or Rome if they feel that they can no longer serve their congregation because of this?
Will there be attempts by individual priests, vicars, etc to sue the Government if they feel the proposed legislation forces them to consider their vocation.
Already, more liberal-thinking Christian denominations have said they don't have issues with same-sex marriage in their buildings, as also have liberal Jews.
This very proposal – if it goes ahead – risks divisions between liberal and conservative Christian denominations.