When The Rev Philip Millen of Randalstown Free Presbyterian Church wrote a letter to Anrtim Borough Council objecting to civil partnerships, he was horrified to see it photocopied on the back of civil partnership application forms.
A “clerical error” was blamed for the mix up, but that doesn’t stop Mr Millen hinting darkly that “there may be ulterior motives at work”.
“I really am against gay marriages” said Mr Millen. “I feel it’s unscriptural and wrong according to the bible. I wrote a letter to the council expressing my concern, but the way it was presented at the meeting could have given the wrong impression of my views. People might have thought that I was pro civil partnerships, which I am not”.
Though it is usual for papers involved in debates to be stapled or clipped together, and despite of the paper saving possibilities of using both sides of the page in photocopying, Mr Millen is having none of this rational explanation.
“I was outraged that the council should do such a thing” he pronounced, “I wanted to register my objection, and printing it on the back of pro gay marriage writing could have confused the matter. I think that councillors should be able to choose whether or not to perform gay marriages according to whether they believe or not. If they have a conscious, they should abstain”.
“I asked the council for an apology, and eventually I went to a meeting with the Mayor where he said that he was sorry that I felt misrepresented. I think it puts me in a bad light”.
“I do not want to give the wrong impression,” he reiterates. “I am against gay marriages.” No danger of mistaking that!