‘It would be like asking a policeman to break the law’: Prominent priests backs Aylesbury MP’s stance on gay marriage

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A priest has said he would be unwilling to marry two gay men after the equal marriage bill was passed in the House of Commons.

Father John Byrne from St Joseph’s Catholic Church said he could not support the idea of the equal marriage bill passed by a 225 majority last week.

This comes after Aylesbury MP David Lidington voted against the bill along with 135 other Conservative MPs.

Father Byrne said: “I could not marry two men. It would be like asking a policeman to break the law he’s upholding.

“I uphold the Catholic word.”

The Europe minister said: “I think that marriage is such an important institution in our society that its definition should not be altered without an extremely compelling case for doing so.

Mr Lidington said that those in favour of the bill argue the definition of marriage has always evolved over the years.

But the MP said this ignores that marriage has always bound together one man and one woman, exclusively and permanently.

And it is a view shared by Father Byrne.

He added: “It would be extremely difficult for our churches to marry two men.

“Like many faiths I believe marriage is between a man and a woman, that’s what very special about a marriage.

“I value all relationships which are true and good.

“A very significant thing of marriage is the openness to the beginning and procreation of children.

“It’s almost logical, if you think about it.”

Religious institutions were assured with the vote that they would have the final say on whether to marry gay people.

Father Byrne said he would be paying close attention to how the bill progresses in the House of Lords.

He added: “We have seen things altered in the past. As the wise man says, we will see and time will tell what happens.”

Mr Lidington’s decision to vote against equal marriages was blasted by Liberal Democrat councillor Steven Lambert, a gay politician who stood against him at the last general election.

He accused the minister of being ‘out of touch with the ordinary people’ and said it could have a big effect at next general election in 2015.

He added: “He’s out of step. Why should my relationship be less equal?

“It shows that Cameron has not got a grip and that they have not reformed the party. Those old Tory dinosaurs are still there and that’s there for everybody to see. It’s still the same nasty old party.”