Archbishop bashes Catholics for helping gay couples

Anti-gay Archbishop of Westminster attacks Britain’s Catholic Marriage Care charity for offering supportive counseling to same-sex couples

Archbishop bashes Catholics for helping gay couples
24 September 2012

The Archbishop of Westminster has attacked a Catholic marriage counseling service after it helped same-sex couples.

Catholic Marriage Care was criticized for giving marriage preparation services to gay couples looking to take part in civil partnerships in Britain.

It comes as Archbishop Vincent Nichols, the UK’s most senior Catholic cleric, continues his battle against plans for full marriage equality in the country.

The charity got £63,000 ($102,000 €79,000) from the Catholic Church last year to fund its work but receives almost £500,000 ($811,000 €628,000) from the state – the majority of its income.

It is the second largest marriage counseling service in the country.

Catholic Marriage Care states ‘Our counseling service is open to and welcomes everybody over the age of 16, married or not, straight or not’.

And it ‘welcomes all couples considering a committed relationship such as marriage’.

Terry Prendergast, the chief executive, had previously said the group offers ‘focused marriage preparation’ for same-sex couples.

Prendergast has previously stated children are not harmed by being raised by same-sex parents.

But Nichols spokesman said the archbishop wanted the charity to only offer services in the context they ‘promote and support marriage and family life in accordance with the Church’s vision of marriage as a vocation of life and love’.

He added: ‘It is the legal and fiduciary responsibility of the directors of the company to ensure that the charitable objects of Catholic Marriage Care Limited are observed and fulfilled.

‘The provision of services in accordance with the teaching of the Catholic Church is also a requirement for Catholic Marriage Care Limited to maintain its continued use of the title Catholic within its designation and to retain the patronage of one of the Catholic Bishops of England and Wales.’

Nichols hit the headlines earlier this year when he compared plans for gay marriage in Britain to slavery.

But he struggled to defend his remarks when he faced the BBC’s Jeremy Paxman, generally considered to be Britain’s toughest TV interviewer.

Read GSN’s guide to busting the myths used by homophobes to try to block gay marriage here.

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

No thumbnail available

Strictly judge reveals which X Factor star he hopes to see in a same-sex pair

But Craig Revel Horwood doubts the BBC show will cast a same-sex dancing couple this time
No thumbnail available

UK gangs sell sham gay marriages for citizenship

Authorities say fake gay couples are harder to detect
No thumbnail available

Gay singer Sam Buttery on proving himself after The Voice

In an interview with HomoLAB, the reality show contestant describes how he had to go bald for his role in Boy George musical Taboo
No thumbnail available

China 12-year-old stabs classmate to death for touching his 'lower body'

Middle school student stabs the boy in the neck with a folding knife
No thumbnail available

Obama raises just shy of $15 million at George Clooney's house

President talks to star-studded crowd about gay marriage shift: 'The truth is it was a logical extension of what America is supposed to be'
No thumbnail available

Words matter: Obama used ‘gay’ 272 times in five years

US report shows US president has used LGBTI inclusive vocabulary more than any other president
No thumbnail available

Frankfurt's pride 'Christopher Street Day' looks a lot like Oktoberfest

Thousands of LGBT people are crowding the German city, where the Christopher Street Day has been welcomed by the mayor
No thumbnail available

Now is the time to talk about race

It is not the post-racial era we dreamed of
No thumbnail available

Gay man called 'faggot' and beaten unconscious in California

Victim: 'They knew I was gay. They knew they were taller and bigger'
No thumbnail available

Openly gay singer Bright Light Bright Light to open for Elton John

The electro-pop singer joins the Rocket Man singer on his North American tour this autumn