ADVERTISING
 
Sunday, February 23   Sign in or Register
 
Evangelical Focus
 
Flecha
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
FOLLOW US ON
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google +
  • Instagram
  • Soundcloud
 

Newsletter
Newsletter, sign up to receive all our News by email.
 
 

POLL
Society
Should Christians join social protests?



SEE MORE POLLS
 

 
TOP 10 MOST VIEWED



Freedom of conscience
 

Northern Ireland will protect religious liberty regarding same sex-marriage

Under the new law, “mere criticism of gay marriage is not an offense”, authorities say. There will be a consultation before religious same-sex weddings become legal in May 2020.

SOURCES Christian Institute AUTHOR Evangelical Focus BELFAST 08 JANUARY 2020 19:00 h GMT+1
Photo: Nick Karvounis. Unsplash (CC0).

Northern Ireland is due to have same-sex marriage on January 13, after a law reforming abortion and marriage that was passed by the Belfast Parliament in July, and came into force in October.



The group Christian Institute had expressed concerns that the new law “could get in the way of free speech and debate about gay marriage”.



It warned the Northern Ireland Office (NIO) that it would seek legal action, unless citizens receive clear protections for free speech, written into public order law, just like they were in England and Wales before gay marriage was introduced there”.



 



NI SECRETARY: “MERE CRITICISM ON SAME-SEX MARRIAGE IS NOT AN OFFENCE”



In response to Christian Institute demands, Northern Ireland Secretary Julian Smith confirmied that “Public Order legislation is being amended to underline that mere criticism of same-sex marriage is not an offense”.



Furthermore, equality law is also being changed, to protect religious bodies and staff from being sued for declining to take part in a blessing or other event marking a civil same-sex wedding”.



Smith also pointed out that religious organisations will be ale to dismiss a staff member who enters a same-sex marriage, if that is incompatible with the organisation’s values.



With the changes in the law, private legal instruments, such as wills, are not forced to include same-sex marriage where that was not the intention.



 



CLOSE MONITORING AND TRAINING



“We are grateful that the Secretary of State has recognised the validity of the issues we have raised, and has acted to address each of the areas of concern that we have”, Simon Calvert, Deputy Director for Public Affairs at The Christian Institute, said.



He emphasised the importance of “proper training and guidance for the police, to ensure respect for freedom of speech on these issues”.



“We don’t want people using the police to try to punish those who believe in traditional marriage”, he added.



 



FUTURE CONSULTATION ON SAME-SEX RELIGIOUS WEDDINGS



Although civil same-sex marriages will become legal by January 13, further changes will be made in April 2020 to allow religious same-sex weddings.



“We intend to consult on same-sex religious marriage and conversion entitlements in the coming weeks. Further regulations will then follow”, a NIO spokesman said.


 

 


0
COMMENTS

    If you want to comment, or

 



 
 
YOUR ARE AT: - - Northern Ireland will protect religious liberty regarding same sex-marriage
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
AUDIOS Audios
 
Julia Doxat-Purser: 25 years of EEA office in Brussels Julia Doxat-Purser: 25 years of EEA office in Brussels

An interview with the socio-political representative of the European Evangelical Alliance about how evangelical Christians work at the heart of the European Union.

 
Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation

Are Christians called to make a difference in environmental care? What has creation care to do with "loving our neighbours"? An interview with the Global Advocacy and Influencing Director of Tearfund.

 
Lars Dahle: Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church Lars Dahle: Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church

An interview with Lars Dahle, of the Steering Committee of the Lausanne Movement Global Consultation on Nominal Christianity held in Rome.

 
Testimony: Wildfires near Athens Testimony: Wildfires near Athens

Nico Spies, a Christian worker in Athens, gives details about the wildfires in Greece.

 
PICTURES Pictures
 
Photos: European Week of Prayer Photos: European Week of Prayer

Christians joined the Evangelical Alliance Week of Prayer in dozens of European cities as local churches came together to worship God. 

 
Photos: Students at ‘Revive Europe’ Photos: Students at ‘Revive Europe’

Photos of the student conference that brought together 3,000 European Christians in Germany. ‘Revive our hearts, revive our universities, revive Europe’.

 
Min19: Childhood, family and the church Min19: Childhood, family and the church

The first evangelical congress on childhood and family was held in Madrid. Pictures of the event, November 1-2.

 
VIDEO Video
 
What is Paul's main message in Galatians? What is Paul's main message in Galatians?

“God the Father, the Son and the Spirit are at work in our lives, through the gospel, to bring us into a relationship with theTrinity”, Peter Mead, Director of Cor Deo, says.

 
Why are some Christians opposed to higher education? Why are some Christians opposed to higher education?

“I can understand why people are cautious about higher education, but we need to understand that education in itself is not the danger”, says Daryl McCarthy.

 
Christian candidacies in Taiwan increased by 40% in 2020 election Christian candidacies in Taiwan increased by 40% in 2020 election

Many hope their effort will inspire a new generation of political representatives with a strong Christian faith. “God has a long-term plan”.

 
Video: Highlights of ‘Revive Europe’ Video: Highlights of ‘Revive Europe’

A video summary of the student conference that gathered 3,000 in Karlsruhe, Germany. 6 days in 6 minutes.

 
 
Follow us on Soundcloud
Follow us on YouTube
 
 
WE RECOMMEND
 
PARTNERS
 

 
AEE
EVANGELICAL FOCUS belongs to Areópago Protestante, linked to the Spanish Evangelical Alliance (AEE). AEE is member of the European
Evangelical Alliance and World Evangelical Alliance.
 

Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.