The Christmas Message

Archbishop of WestminsterThis year the Archbishop of Westminster, the leader of the Catholics in England and Wales, took the opportunity of his bully pulpit on Christmas Eve to tell his congregation that God hates LGBT people and does not want us to have equal civil rights. Peace and goodwill to all is so outdated: modern Christians are expected to hate as directed.

Vincent Nichols

told worshippers that the Government has no mandate for the change and had not followed the proper rules of British democracy.

“There was no announcement in any party manifesto, no Green Paper, no statement in the Queen’s Speech. And yet here we are on the verge of primary legislation,” he said.

In an apparent reference to the totalitarian state described in the novel 1984, he added:

“From a democratic point-of-view, it’s a shambles. George Orwell would be proud of that manoeuvre, I think the process is shambolic.”

Nichols told lots of lies about the lack of public support for equal marriage, but his key objection is – he claims – that in England & Wales, this was not done properly. (In Scotland, Cardinal O’Brien never made that objection because a consultation on same-sex marriage was in every major party’s manifesto.)

Here’s another change where the procedure that Nichols demands was not followed:

The leaders of the 16 Commonwealth countries where the Queen is head of state unanimously approved the changes at a summit in Perth, Australia.

It means a first-born daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge would take precedence over younger brothers.

The ban on the monarch being married to a Roman Catholic was also lifted.

This change will only ever affect a small number of people, but required Parliament to amend some of the oldest extant legislation in the UK, legislation which predates the Union of Parliaments and which can be considered a part of the UK’s unwritten constitution: the 1701 Act of Settlement and the 1689 Bill of Rights.

That change was announced in October 2011. Did the Archbishop of Westminster use his Christmas Eve sermon to rave about the totalitarian changes being made without proper process? About the lack of a Green Paper, or a manifesto pledge, or even a public consultation?

Would he like those changes repealed, so that once again the monarch and the heir are banned from being or marrying a Catholic?

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Filed under LGBT Equality, Religion

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