In an attempt to placate same-sex marriage activists as well as the Church of England, British prime minister David Cameron has announced legislation that would legalize such marriages yet ban the Church of England from performing them.
The bill, which Cameron wants to introduce next year, will authorize same-sex civil marriages and permit religious ceremonies if religious groups decide to "opt in," said British culture secretary Maria Miller. The legislation is expected to garner enough parliamentary support to become law.
The Associated Press reported that "the legislation would make it unlawful for the Church of England ... and the Anglican Church in Wales to conduct gay weddings. The government does not have the same legal authority over other churches, but hopes that the ban for the Church of England will reassure religious opponents of same-sex marriage that they will not be forced to take part."
Miller also said a legal "quadruple lock" would ensure that religious institutions abstaining ...1