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Church minister coins Northern Ireland’s same-sex marriage ban ‘un-Christian’

A church minister has deemed Northern Ireland’s ban on same-sex marriage “un-Christian”.

Speaking at Belfast Pride, Canon Charles Kenny said that the country’s continued prevention of marriage equality was unjust.

Northern Ireland is the only part of the UK where same-sex marriage is still not legal.

Kenny, who has served as a priest for nearly 50 years in Northern Ireland said that the same-sex marriage ban was as ludicrous on the ban on Catholics and Protestants marrying.

He said: “There was lots of lobbying against mixed religious marriages and nowadays we are all embarrassed about that.

“And I think in the future, we will also be embarrassed about this ban on same-sex marriage.”

He added that the current ban was “comparable” to the “sectarian attitudes” that he had grown up with.

“I grew up in the 1950s and I know what is was like. If I had had a girlfriend who was Catholic, for some people the sky would have fallen in.

“Thank goodness that kind of attitude doesn’t happen often now so this current ban is comparable to those old sectarian attitudes.”

Reverend Chris Hudson also spoke at the Pride event and used the opportunity to make an appeal to the DUP on marriage equality.

Hudson said: “I hope the next time round that the Holy Spirit will descend upon them and we will see that it is fair, that it functions well in every other part of the UK. Why should Northern Ireland be any different?”

The march, which attracted tens of thousands of people, set off in Writers’ Square and ended at Belfast City Hall.

Protesters held placards protesting the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), which has repeatedly used peace process powers to block same-sex marriage legislation.

There have been five votes on same-sex marriage at Stormont but the last time the Assembly voted in November 2015, despite a vote narrowly in favour, the DUP blocked it again.

The DUP used a petition of concern to block any change through legislation.

Despite this, the DUP and its leader Arlene Foster, denies that it is homophobic saying that it just wants to protect the “traditional” definition of marriage.

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