Church: Cameron gay marriage plans are 'divisive'

The Church of England has criticised David Cameron's backing for gay church weddings, saying its opposition is "not knee-jerk resistance to change but based on a conviction that the consequences of change will not be beneficial for society as a whole".

Our concern is for the way the meaning of marriage will change for everyone, gay or straight, if the proposals are enacted.

The uniqueness of marriage is that it embodies the underlying, objective, distinctiveness of men and women. To argue that this is of no social value is to assert that men and women are simply interchangeable individuals.

To change the nature of marriage for everyone will be divisive and deliver no obvious legal gains given the rights already conferred by civil partnerships.

– Church of England statement