Gay Marriage Is Now Legal in England & Wales


Same-sex couples can now legally marry in England and Wales. Parliament had passed the Marriage (Same-Sex Couples) Act last July, but because of various implementation deadlines, it wasn’t until today that couples could actually wed. Prime minister David Cameron heralded the change by writing: “Put simply, in Britain it will no longer matter whether you are straight or gay—the State will recognize your relationship as equal.”

The Church of England, which was created in 1534 because King Henry VIII thought the Catholic Church was too conservative about traditional marriage, has also softened its stance. Though the church leadership had originally announced plans to forbid clergy from performing same-sex marriages, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said Friday night that it would no longer oppose gay marriage among Anglicans. “The law’s changed; we accept the situation,” he told the BBC.

A recent BBC poll found 68% of Britons accepting of gay marriage, so the Church’s shift may not be unexpected. However, the church has said that it won’t allow clergy themselves to enter into same sex partnerships because “getting married to someone of the same sex would clearly be at variance with the teaching of the Church of England,” which seems a bit like they’re saying, “Ok, you can get gay married and be ok with your friends and family who get gay married because you like Jesus but you don’t like like Jesus. If you like like Jesus, you can’t get gay married because gay marriage is still against God’s plan.”

But anyway, the church issue aside, good for England. Good for Wales. Equality was long overdue in Albion as it is everywhere. (Scotland recently passed legislation to legalize gay marriage by the autumn as well.)

Mazel tov!

 

THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

payment methods

THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate