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Marriage Equality: Reflections on Church and State

14 November 2012

For Immediate Release

Marriage Equality: Reflections on Church and State

Thursday 22 November, 6-7:30pm

Guest Speakers: Louisa Wall MP and Boris Dittrich, from the UN Human Rights Watch at St Matthew-in-the-City

Marriage is always civil and sometimes also religious. The Marriage Amendment bill has been drafted to allow churches to make their own decisions about who they will marry. Clay Nelson, Associate Priest notes, “It may not be commonly known but no minister is required to officiate at a wedding, even if their denomination says it is OK.”

Come along and hear how some churches are looking forward to celebrating same-sex marriages if their denominations allow and how other faith communities will be free to restrict marriage to opposite sex couples. As Louisa Wall has consistently pointed out to those concerned about how this will impact churches, “There is nothing to fear.”

Louisa Wall will be there to answer all your questions about the bill, plus we will have the benefit of the experience of Boris Dittrich, Advocacy Director, LGBT Programme, Human Rights Watch, New York. Boris is a native of the Netherlands and has served in their National Congress for 12 years as a Member of Parliament. During his tenure as its first openly gay member in Parliament he passed four private bills, something that has never been done before or since. It was his bill for marriage equality that made the Netherlands the first country in the world to introduce marriage equality. This is just a sample of his experiences that he can enlighten us as to what to expect if this bill passes.

St Matthew-in-the-City

Corner of Wellesley and Hobson

Tea and coffee served from 5:45.

ENDS

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