Archbishop Antonio Mennini, the Apostolic Nuncio, has called for the formation of an alliance between Catholics and other faiths, including other Christian denominations, to fight against the current government proposals to bring forth equality in marriage.

Speaking to an audience of Catholic bishops from England and Wales at their plenary meeting in Leeds, he asked them to be prepared for what would be a “lengthy and probably difficult campaign,” adding, “I wonder if we shouldn’t ask for and look for more support among other Christian confessions and indeed, persons of other faiths.”

“It seems to me that, concerning the institution of marriage, and indeed the sanctity of human life, we have much in common with the position of the Jewish community, the Chief Rabbi and many of the more significant representatives of Islam,” he said.

His comments come after yesterday, Archbishop Peter Smith said that while there has been no “formal” contact with Jewish groups to form what he called a united front on the subject of marriage, “we will work with anyone who agrees with us that to redefine marriage is not a good thing for society and will lead to confusion.”

Archbishop Smith is the second most senior Catholic cleric in England and Wales. He called the current plans for equal marriage “dangerous,” adding, “the Church of England is very much along the same lines as ourselves on this.” He also used the opportunity to defend the teaching of homophobic definitions of marriage at Catholic schools, which, as PinkNews.co.uk reports today, is now the subject of government investigation.

The Catholic Church has been so far the most vocal of opponents to the government proposals, with the country’s most senior Catholic calling it “a grotesque subversion of a universally accepted human right.” Liberal factions of the Jewish and Christian faiths, however, have come out strongly in favour of the proposals.