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Catholic World News

Church may drop legal-marriage role: Australian archbishop

October 03, 2011

The Catholic Church will cease witnessing legal marriages if the government insists on equal treatment for same-sex couples, an Australian archbishop has warned.

“We might be back to the ghetto,” Archbishop Barry Hickey of Perth told parishioners. “We can’t do those marriages at all. And if the law forces us to, we cancel our registration as marriage celebrants.”


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  • Posted by: Joseph Paul - Oct. 04, 2011 6:53 AM ET USA

    JoePip, Archbishop Hickey is not saying that the Church will not sacramentally marry people, that is provide the Sacrament of Matrimony to Catholic couples. What he is saying is that they won't do the registration part which produces papers that get sent into the government authority (the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages in Australia). The couple will have to do that separately as is the case in many other countries and always has been.

  • Posted by: JoePip - Oct. 03, 2011 9:26 PM ET USA

    JMJ All Priests from Pope Benedict XVI are Ordained to the priesthood and are Commanded by Jesus' Church to Bless/Santify (the marriage) by offering the Mass, Etc. If the priest is threatened with persecution than So be it(another Cross for them to Carry) they Must be obedient to God's Sacremental Gifts. Gov. (People) have no control of God's Church unless We/They Cowardly subsmit. It's God's Church not mine the Pope's, Priest's, etc.