The leaders of the Roman Catholic Church in Scotland have attacked the government and told the faithful to get involved in politics.

The Bishop’s Conference response to the legislation proposed for the next Parliamentary session in Westminster used some strong language, and reflects the frustration that the Church feels with the Labour party.

“Catholic adoption agencies are now to be indifferent as to whether a child is to be placed with a married couple of a homosexual cohabiting couple; this is gravely wrong,” the bishops said.

“Policies must help encourage family stability.

“We highlight the importance of the human family as the building block of society. Centuries of experience and learning testify to the importance of supporting family life for the well-being of society.”

They called on the government to “rethink” the forthcoming Equality Bill, which they claim imposes the “ideology” that gay people should be treated equally and impinges on religious freedom.

The strongly-worded statement from the Scottish Bishops may reflect their political impotence.

Despite their constant attacks on the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill, it passed the House of Commons with ease. A final vote will be taken when the House resumes in October.

The bishops have not been shy to directly interfere in elections.

Jim Devine, Bishop of Motherwell, said that Labour had “lost its ethical credibility in the nation at large” during the Glasgow East by-election this summer

He also attempted to interfere in the democratic process during last year’s elections for the Scottish parliament by publicly withdrawing his backing from the Labour party.

In March he claimed that the “gay lobby” attends Holocaust memorials “to create for themselves the image of a group of people under persecution.”

The bishop said there is a “giant conspiracy” going on and claimed he is taking on the forces of secularism.

“The homosexual lobby has been extremely effective in aligning itself with minority groups.

“It is ever present at the service each year for the Holocaust memorial, as if to create for themselves the image of a group of people under persecution.”

He criticised the decision to honour Sir Ian McKellen for his work for equality, pointing out that Oscar Wilde was jailed for homosexual offences.