Gays fight CofE lock
A homosexual couple in Essex has mounted a legal challenge over the Government’s proposals at the end of last year to grant the Church of England exemption from conducting same-sex ‘marriages’.
According to a report from gay paper Pink news, Tony and Barrie Drewitt-Barlow say the proposed legislation would result in discrimination against them.
At the end of 2012, Culture Secretary Maria Miller told the Commons she was putting in place a ‘quadruple lock’ of measures to guarantee religious organisations would not have to marry same-sex couples against their wishes. Individual churches will be able to ‘opt-in’ if they wish to marry same-sex couples, although congregations in the Church of England and Church in Wales will not be able to opt in.
Mr Drewitt-Barlow and his partner, who courted controversy in 1999 for becoming one of the first gay couples to have a child using a surrogate, say they wanted to get married in the same church where their children were baptised.
It is expected that the Church of England is going to be the focus of much aggression, both internally and from political lobbying, over this matter.