Don’t redefine marriage, warn Scottish Free Presbyterians

The Free Presbyterian Church of Scotland has warned that redefining marriage will be harmful to the foundations of society.

The Scottish Government is currently holding a public consultation on whether marriage should be redefined in law to introduce same-sex marriage.

The Free Presbyterian Church has strongly urged the Scottish National Party administration not to change the definition of marriage and said that it will “never solemnise nor recognise same-sex unions”.

Harmful

It announced that church leaders would shortly meet with representatives of the Scottish Government to discuss issues arising from the consultation.

Revd David Campbell, Convener of its Religion and Morals Committee, said redefining marriage would be “extremely dangerous and subversive of Christian morality and harmful to the foundations of our society which are so intimately bound up with the divinely ordained institution of marriage”.

In a separate development it was announced today that over 70 of Scotland’s largest evangelical churches, attended by more than 20,000 people, have signed an open letter to First Minister Alex Salmond urging him not to redefine marriage.

Unity

The open letter to Mr Salmond asks him to “uphold the clear understanding of marriage that has served Scotland well for centuries”.

Paul Rees, Senior Pastor at Charlotte Baptist Chapel, Edinburgh, said: “We as evangelical church leaders have come together to show our support for marriage and our steadfast opposition to redefining it in law.

“The Scottish Government has miscalculated the strength of feeling on this matter.

Parents

“This issue is not about legal rights, all the legal rights of marriage are already available to homosexual couples through civil partnerships. This issue is about redefining marriage across Scotland.”

Revd David McCarthy of St Silas Episcopal Church, Glasgow, said: “Changing the definition of marriage would have profound effects on our society, not least for Scotland’s children.

“Traditional marriage gives kids the complementary parenting of a mother and father which same-sex marriage does not provide.”

Schools

Revd Dominic Smart of Gilcomston South (Church of Scotland), Aberdeen, said: “Our sincere concern is for the wellbeing of Scotland, and I am particularly concerned about the implications for schools if marriage is redefined.

“If marriage is redefined in law then that new definition will be the one promoted in schools. Children will be taught that when they grow up they can marry someone of the same sex. Any parents who object will be labelled as intolerant and narrow minded.”

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