Sir Tom Farmer, the wealthy founder of Kwik-Fit and a Scottish National Party (SNP) donor, has criticised the party’s plans to redefine marriage.
The 71-year-old also suggested that the Scottish Government had “alienated” itself from “large parts of the population”.
Speaking to The Sunday Herald the Roman Catholic entrepreneur said: “Most people would see a marriage as being between two of the opposite sexes, the male and the female.
“One of the main important areas of marriage is the creation of children, and the family life.
“The other problem is that there would be a fear that this was the first step to trying to force the churches to do things which are totally against their whole beliefs.”
The Scottish Government is currently holding a consultation on whether to rewrite the definition of marriage. The consultation is due to finish in December.
A spokesman for Nicola Sturgeon, deputy leader of the SNP, said: “No decisions will be taken until after the consultation is complete.
“Faith groups and celebrants should not be obliged to solemnise same-sex marriages.”
Earlier this month Gordon Wilson, who led the Scottish National Party from 1979 to 1990, called for a referendum to be held on the issue.
Cardinal Keith O’Brien, the head of the Roman Catholic Church in Scotland, has said: “The view of the Church is clear, no government can rewrite human nature; the family and marriage existed before the state and are built on the union between a man and a woman.
“Any attempt to redefine marriage is a direct attack on a foundational building block of society and will be strenuously opposed.”
Mario Conti, the Archbishop of Glasgow, has written to every RC parish in the country saying the Scottish Government does not have a mandate to “reconstruct society on ideological grounds”.