David Cameron has attempted to reconcile with Christians over his Government’s plans to legalise gay marriage.
He delivered a “plea” to church ministers and Christian politicians during an Easter reception at Downing Street this week.
According to The Telegraph, he said: “I hope we won’t fall out too much over gay marriage. There’ll be some strong arguments and some strong words.”
The Prime Minister sought to reassure the assembled leaders that his proposals would “change what happens in a register office, not what happens in a church”.
Mr Cameron also touched on attempts to restrict public expressions of faith.
“I think there’s something of a fightback going on, and we should welcome that,” the Prime Minister said.
“The values of the Bible, the values of Christianity are the values that we need.”
The Government has come up against strong opposition from the church and wider society over its proposals.
A petition launched by the Coalition For Marriage in defence of marriage as a union between one man and one woman has reached 365,000 signatures.
The Government launched a coalition into extending civil marriage to gay couples but stressed that the aim was to ascertain how to introduce the change, rather than if.
Church leaders opposing the plan include the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, and the head of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales, Archbishop Vincent Nichols.
In a separate message released for Easter, the Prime Minister said the coming festival would be an occasion to “remember the life, sacrifice and living legacy of Christ”.
“The New Testament tells us so much about the character of Jesus; a man of incomparable compassion, generosity, grace, humility and love,” he said.
“In the book of Luke, we are told that Jesus said, ‘Do to others as you would have them do to you’ - advice that when followed makes for a happier, and better society for everyone.”
PM doesn’t want fall out over gay marriage
Published 04 April 2012