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Archbishop of Wales: Banning churches from same-sex marriages is a step too far

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  1. Good man, Dr Morgan.

    I hope more people listen to him on this issue than that tiresome chap in York.

    1. I wish they would make up their bloody minds. He should complain to his own bishops not the government.

      1. They are really miffed that smaller denominations have been given religious freedom. A ban on all religious SSM marriage would have suited them. But eh that’s religious freedom guys.

        1. Robert in S. Kensington 12 Dec 2012, 12:48pm

          Exactly! It’s really shone a very bright light on their collective bigotry once and for all. Not good publicity for a church with declining membership and lack of funding. They’ve been given more than they really wished for. Too damn bad if some of em don’t like it.

      2. This is possibly an abstruse point, but isn’t the Church in Wales a different organisation from the Church of England (though both part of the Anglican Communion of course)?

    2. A sound view, indeed! The government’s plans to make it illegal for the Church of England and the Church of Wales to marry gay people is little different from a plan to make it illegal for Company X and Company Y to employ black people!

      Would the government even CONCEIVE of a plan to make it illegal for Company X and Company Y to employ black people?

      1. Get over yourself Eddy. This is about snookering the Church of Institutional Bigotry into a box. Managing the fears of the state church was never going to be easy. This solves it for now. Let’s get this thing done and I’ll put money on the CofE begging to hold same sex marriages in a trice.

        1. “Get over yourself Eddy”

          No one can have any idea what the above instruction is meant to convey.

          As I said, would the government even CONCEIVE of a plan to make it illegal for Company X and Company Y to employ black people?

  2. Complaining about being banned from something they screamed that they will never do?

    1. He has been quite vocal in his support of same sex marriage!

      1. He was not as vocal as the leadership of the CofE. I am not aware of him ever going on the record to support equal marriage in the CofE. He supports gay rights, but not equal marriage in church.

        1. But he’s not the CoE, is he? He’s the CinW. Also, he might just be someone who, on the whole, prefers the thin-end-of-the-wedge approach as far as the Anglican Communion is concerned.

      2. Sister Mary Clarence 12 Dec 2012, 5:51pm

        He may well have done but the Church of Wales as a body has not. They got the protection they wanted and now it seems they don’t want it quite a much. Serves them right really doesn’t it.

        I have no sympathy whatsoever.

        It will serve to emphasis how out of touch they really are.

  3. The churches of England and Wales need more people like Dr Morgan speaking out in favour, as he has done in the past.

  4. What happened to all loving God then? Love is Love. Commitment is commitment.

    1. I’m not too sure what this comment is supposed to mean, it’s a bit too cryptic, sorry.

    2. Don’t be silly.

      Churches just peddle division and hate.

      Nowt to do with Love.

  5. Oh I’m just so confused now! One minute the churches are freaking out that they may have to marry us, so the law is made to ensure they never have to, and then they’re complaining about that!!! This man may be open minded and supported, but a lot of his clergy and parishoners are not…. I wish they’d make their mind up!

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 12 Dec 2012, 12:53pm

      Well, Maria Miller has made their mind up for them. A brilliant move in my view. Let them scream discrimination and abuse of religious freedom. They were only too happy to let their fierce opposition to equal civil marriage known and some of the vilest rhetoric used, so now they’ve received a wonderful Christmas present from the government, full protection. This has made the CoE even more irrelevant in the daily life of the nation. Maybe the ban will herald support for the word they dread hearing, disestablishment?

    2. It’s not a matter of them making their mind up. There is no single mind applied to the matter. It is good news that some in the church speak out against bigotry.

  6. If I remember rightly, Justin Welby recently said that he did not like the language of exclusion. So it would be interesting to know whether he agrees with the Archbishop of Wales on this issue.

    1. Here is the quote: “But I also know I need to listen very attentively to the LGBT communities and examine my own thinking carefully and prayerfully. I am always averse to the language of exclusion.”

      1. Robert in S. Kensington 12 Dec 2012, 3:43pm

        A bit hypocritical of him when you consider the CoE has been excluding us forever. I mean, they have gay clergy in CPs and are told they have to remain celibate. He has nerve to say he doesn’t like the language of exclusion. Why didn’t he speak up before he was appointed? He didn’t did he? Williams never did either. They deserve to be isolated which is what the new law will do. Now they can commiserate with their roman counterparts, no female bishops, no same-sex marriage for them.

    2. Robert in S. Kensington 12 Dec 2012, 12:56pm

      Its too late. I don’t have any sympathy for Welby, none of them really. He already made his views quite clear that he opposed equal civil marriage. His chances of dialogue that he said he wanted with the LGBT community are now looking slimmer than ever, in fact no longer on the table. Serves them right. What on earth could his church now offer gay people? Absolutely NOTHING.

      1. What could the CoE offer to gay people? They would have to fight for their rights. That would be something indeed.

  7. Even if he were against marriage I don’t suppose he’d want the gov’t enshrining church positions into law. This, to me, sets a precedece that another gov’t could come in and dictate that they must allow marriages or something else. How about religion and gov’t just stay separate?

    1. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights prevents governments from interfering with the practice of religious rites, however, it means the government has been in default for 50+ years since the Quakers and others had their religious freedoms, to practice their faith as they wanted, curtailed and infringed. The CoE and Church of Wales have said they don’t want to carry out same-sex marriages, and they are already banned, so no change in the position.

      They are also the ones who have been constantly moaning that the law won’t be able to fully protect them — and now, it will. It’s a regrettable position, and we have many supporters in those churches too, but it’s down to the language and authority of the leadership that this has happened. They’ve shot their own foot off. I have little to no sympathy.

    2. Unfortunately the state and the CofE haven’t been separate since it’s creation: it is the church of the state. Until a government is brave enough to unpick this relationship, measures in law to regulate the CofE’s behaviour are necessary.

  8. Hang on, hang on. They are not being banned … they are already banned. This means it’s not a NEW ban, but a continuation of the existing ban.

    And whilst he might be in favour, the rest of us have had to listen to pretty homphobic bigoted nasty vile demonising language from the Church of Wales and Church of England.

    They got what they wanted, for it to remain banned, but just for them. They should not complain now they’ve got what they wanted. Or did they really think the government was going to ban ALL religions from religious freedom to practice their faith as they want, based on these out-dated crusty old ancient institutions?

    The language simply maintains the already existing legal position, for them.

    1. Problem is the Government intends to enshrine the discrimination into law. There’s little difference between that and racist laws in South Africa under Apartheid. That’s why this change is deeply troubling to so many people.

      1. Do it to them – because they were intending to do it to us. They even opposed Civil Marriage when that was intended to be the only option we were offered. Never forget these bigots didn’t even want us to have Civil Partnerships – they voted against that.

        I hear exactly what you’re saying, but sometimes, to make people really understand and wake up to themselves, you have to treat them as they have treated you. This is discrimination against their religious freedom, I know that, but it’s what they wanted, and more to the point, it’s what they deserve.

        1. Ultimately, equality is about teaching respect for minorities and vulnerable groups. I’m not convinced that enshrining discrimination into law – including the right of faith schools to teach against same-sex marriage – will do anything to help stop homophobic bullying in schools. But I may be wrong.

          1. Quite. The government must find ways of tackling homophobic bullying – we seem to require a new radical legally-binding law to ensure that stops.

            We need two things as a priority – equal marriage and to stop homophobic bullying. The latter is best dealt with by anti-bullying programmes like LGBT history lessons (it works really well, but is optional), and if that doesn’t work, use the law against the school and perpetrator (last resort).

        2. Robert in S. Kensington 12 Dec 2012, 1:14pm

          Totally agree with that. The majority of them never wanted CPs and since the equal marriage debate began, they’ve conveniently used them to justify a ban on equal marriage. Proof positive just how disingenous and mendacious they are. The C4M hategroup have had their wings clipped by this latest decision and so too has the CoE.

          I don’t consider this discrimination at all against the majority of the clergy in the CoE because they have vigorously opposed equal marriage, nor have they indicated they would allow clergy a free hand in performing a marriage for a gay couple at the priest’s discretion. There aren’t that many Anglican clergy in support and none of them have petitioned their bishops for permission to marry us. They really can’t complain about discrimination or abuse of religious freedom in this context. Now they have to live with it. They went too far with their opposition so now they’re reaping what they have sewn. Tough titty!

  9. I think this proves what I said yesterday – that the government has played a blinder with this one! By specifically banning the CofE from performing gay marriages, it will give the whinging homophobes what they’ve demanded … but will increasingly marginalise them and make then look out-of-touch, remote, divisive and just plain nasty and will make those religions which opt-in look inclusive, modern and loving. Bring it on!!!!

    1. Totally agree….seems like they are feeling the fear of being made to look ‘out of touch’ and pushed to the sidelines. People will choose the more inclusive and modern looking faiths. Now, what to do about the Catholics…ummmm!

      1. Exactly. I do wonder how the vatican will react.

  10. ...Paddyswurds 12 Dec 2012, 11:24am

    Kerching, Kerching! They are now looking to their collection plates; seeing that they failed to stop equality they now want to be able to benefit financially. Well I say go swivel on this. ban them for ever which wont be for long as they are yesterdays dinosaurs and find themselves on the wrong side of History. Time to start pointing and laughing sarcastically…….

    1. ...Paddyswurds 12 Dec 2012, 11:26am

      …. which wont be for long as they are in rapid decline and probably wont see the decade out…..**

  11. The C of E sought to wreck equal marriage by spreading the lie that the Church would be forced to marry gay couples, when in fact only equal civil marriage was being consulted on. The truth: they think there’s something wrong with gay relationships. I’m delighted that the government has slapped them down with this ban. It means that the only way that they can oppose equal marriage is by saying that it conflicts with the dignity of marriage as understood by the C of E – and people will see their position for what is: bigotry. While I have some sympathy for Dr Morgan, here’s a bit of advice for him: join a different club.

    1. The Christian Church defines marriage as a relationship between a man and a woman endorsed by God. If you dont like that, then you should look to another religion. Why go to a religion and get ‘married in a church that upsets you?!

  12. Jock S. Trap 12 Dec 2012, 11:41am

    The man talks sense but sadly any chance of any loophole for CofE to discriminate and stop this equality they will use it.

    I think the government should listen to Dr Morgan and allow the CofW to participate if that is their wish either now or in the future.

    Sadly the CofE won’t be so forthcoming in this opinion even though many within the CofE itself would want to perform such ceremonies. This however has to be about protecting the LGBT community from the bigots to just get this legislation through. It’s already gonna be tough enough but lets hope at some stage the CofE will come around to similar views as Dr Morgan.

    1. Christopher Hobe Morrison 12 Dec 2012, 12:07pm

      Yet another possibility is for people who feel the need to belong to a church at all, and I suppose one does have its advantages, can leave the Catholic Church and the CofE and form a more progressive, inclusive church built on a worldwide basis, welcoming to people of all sexual orientations, faiths, gender classifications and ethnic idintities (like everybody!). It would not need to be an established church, and have bishops in the House of Lords, etc. In other words it would stand on its own two feet morally. I’m not sure I would want a church that might have the POW as its head, anyway, if his opinions on architecture and music are any indication.

  13. Christopher Hobe Morrison 12 Dec 2012, 11:57am

    People both gay and straight could start getting married in churches that are more inclusive, or alternatively they could get married but not in any church at all. Or they might just decide to not get married at all. This is a choice but not one that should be forced on anyone.

  14. As soon as I heard the CoF was going to be ‘banned’ from conducting SS marriages, I wondered whether the Govt was engaged in reverse psychology: there’s nothing like forbidding someone from doing something to make them want to do it, especially when the prohibition is posed as a denial of ‘rights’. Looks like Dr Morgan is playing along nicely. Well done HMG….Perhaps you might ban BNP and UKIP party members from having SS marriages next – see how the Telegraph readers respond to that….

    1. This was my thought exactly. Watched the commons announcement yesterday and wondered how long it would be before one of the churches spoke out against the ban on them, but I didn’t think it would be less than 24 hours!

  15. ...Paddyswurds 12 Dec 2012, 12:24pm

    Seriously though, this is the work of the vile Carey and the ultra far right in the CofE and CofW. They hoped to use this to stop the inevitable creep of where individual Churches , Parishes, and Clergy would marry Gay couples in defiance of the Church authorities. Looks like it has backfired rather spectacularly though but then they were a bit behind the eight ball anyway if they thought they would get away with it in this day and age…… There is plenty of time to reverse this stupid clause before the act becomes law. lets not have another debacle like the ill fated Civil Partnership Law which is all things and nothing at the end of the day. Get this right now and then it won’t have to be revisited in a few years.

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 12 Dec 2012, 1:04pm

      I agree, Paddy, definitely the dirty work of archbigot Carey. His fingerprints are all over this one. The CoE will never concede that it has bitten off more than it can chew now that they’ve been banned from equal marriage ceremonies. Maria Miller’s move was a beautifully calculated decision to really nail the CoE but I don’t think it really expected just how air-tight the ban appears to be. Notice the silence from the C4M hate group? I don’t even think they would have expected such a drastic measure. They can’t complain now about abuse of religious freedom and neither can the church. If they want it reversed, then let them grovel, but I doubt they’ll move on it because it would mean they’ve conceded defeat. The government have now painted them into a corner from which they won’t really be able to get out for many years to come, not in our life time. I’m gloating.

  16. Pavlos Prince of Greece 12 Dec 2012, 12:26pm

    I am shore, this project of law is the very best, what English gay community can have at the moment. And this ‘ban’ is temporary as all ‘bans’ in history – no more, no less. Maine decision on same-sex marriage in Church of England can (and will make one day) Church of England itself, only. If Lambeth in favor of this, abolition of this ban in the Westminster will be just formality.

    1. Probably. But they’ve done it to themselves. Really, if they want the ban lifted, they will have to appeal to the government to do that – if the Church of England don’t allow individual ministers of religion to make the choice about whether to carry out same-sex marriages, but maintain a blanket ban, then there would be no justification for lifting it. Even if they maintain the ban on same-sex marriages in the Church and go to the ECHR, there is no certainty the legal ban would be lifted.

      If you say I don’t want to do X and I say ok I will prevent you from doing X, you don’t have a case against me saying I’m restricting your right to do X when you’ve already said you don’t want to do X.

      The truth about me is that I’m feeling more opposed to Anglicans and Catholic church leaders, the homophobic bigoted ones, the longer this whole debate goes on, so the sooner it is finished, done and dusted, the better. It’ll be at least a decade before I get rid of my resentment towards them

  17. Robert in S. Kensington 12 Dec 2012, 12:45pm

    Though Dr. Morgan’s support of equal civil marriage is laudable, the problem here is that he seems to be the only bishop speaking up in support and he’s in the minority anyway.

    Let’s face it, the Anglicans have been very swift to condemn equal marriage and some of their statements quite offensive. They made it quite clear they would not be prepared to marry gay couples so what Maria Miller did was give them what they wanted, full protection and exemption by a ban that will put an end to their nonsensical claims that they would be forced to marry us in an attempt to block the new law altogether. it was a very smart move because now it sends the CoE into total isolation from the more progressive denominations. Their membership will suffer as a result, let alone their coffers. Serves them right! I don’t think it quite bargained for such a drastic measure. Serves them right!

  18. Dr Morgan is absolutely right, the proposed legal ban on the CofE marrying same-sex couples shackles the church as much as it does LGBTs (and we have nothing to lose here because a ban on us marrying in church is already in place). I thought the government was trying to place religious freedom and the right to choose at the heart of the new legislation on equal marriage. The proposed ban on the CofE just makes the institution look like a problematic bureaucratic sect which needs the law to tell its adherents how to behave, nothing short of the state’s ‘spoilt child’. I’ve already come across Christians like who, like Dr Morgan, are apalled that their church is going to be singled out in this way. Hopefully they will speak up too.

    1. GulliverUK 12 Dec 2012, 2:09pm

      They have ZERO options but to keep the their religious-based ban, and accept the continuation of the existing legal ban, or to turn around completely, accept same-sex marriages and let individual clergy decide for themselves whether they offer those services, on an individual church-by-church basis. With the OPT-IN system, every single church building has to opt-in – you do that through the local council. Maria Miller has also said each individual minister would have to opt-in, which I think might be new, but can’t be totally sure.

      The unfairness of being singled out is poetic justice IMO, for trying to single-us out and discriminate against just the LGBT community.

      1. Robert in S. Kensington 12 Dec 2012, 3:38pm

        Yes, Maria Miller has in a way dealt them a dose of their own medicine for a change and they don’t like it one bit do they? Protection guarantees is what they demanded and that’s exactly what they have been given. Tough if they don’t like it, they wanted it, so let them deal with it.

  19. Garry Cassell 12 Dec 2012, 3:26pm

    D***heads…can’t have it both ways…Now that you realize same sex marriage will happen and the church can’t stop it…you don’t want to miss out on the $ part…So all this biggitory was about power and control…not about God…

  20. GulliverUK 12 Dec 2012, 3:51pm

    The Church of Wales got what they wanted. They begged the government to treat them exactly the same as the Church of England, it was in their consultation document.

    They got what they wanted, even if it wasn’t what they expected.

  21. GulliverUK 12 Dec 2012, 3:56pm

    Archbishop of Canterbury: Government has no right to introduce gay marriage

    and that’s what the Anglican leaders think, so “f” ’em.

  22. When the churches in the USA realize the money they can get from ssm they will think twice and forget the bigotry. As I’m sure will happen in the UK as in other countries. They don’t want to miss a chance at filling there pockets.

  23. Sister Mary Clarence 12 Dec 2012, 5:53pm


    Its not a ban, its ‘protection’

    Isn’t that exactly what they wanted?

  24. Too little; too late, Dr Morgan.

    Start shouting your support for equal marriage loudly NOW!

  25. I fail to see how the Westminster government can legislate over a church that was disestablished in the 1920s, as the Church in Wales was. (Actually, I believe the Church of England should be disestablished, but that’s another matter.)

    1. I already gave those reasons just a few posts above. The Church of Wales asked the government, in their consultation, to apply the same rules to it, as they did for the Church of England. They don’t want to offer same-sex marriage and won’t any time soon, nor will the Church of England, so the ban simply maintains the very tight legal protections they specifically asked for – they wanted watertight, and that’s what they’ve got.

      It is impossible to sue a church which is legally banned from providing that service, which means an immediately failure of any such action — not that there would be any anyway. The rights of the Church of England and Church of Wales are not being infringed because they are prohibited from supplying services which they have said they have no intention of supply, and that they don’t want to supply. They have not a leg to stand on. I’m struggling to see why many people can’t see that.

      1. Lyn David Thomas 13 Dec 2012, 9:19am

        Small point but its the Church in Wales not Church of Wales – remember it is disestablished. Secondly the government are exempting it because it didn’t want to do church gay weddings, well the Catholic Church is very much against but its not specifically banned. I understand there may be problems with the established church – but not with the Church in Wales.

  26. I appreciate what Dr Morgan is saying; however, given the Church’s current position I find it’s alright to leave the ban on them (do note that it is currently banned so basically nothing is changing for them). Yes it’s discrimination, but it is one that I, and I believe most people can live with. Furthermore it should satisfy the Church since it’s getting what it wanted: that its ban not be lifted. It’ll come a time when they’ll see it as shameful that this law was made that way because they requested it to be that way. And at the speed even the Church is changing, I might even get to see that happen on my lifetime; however after what the Church has said and done on this matter, it’ll be a well deserved embarrassment.

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