Muslims, Catholics Unite to Fight Gay Marriage

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GLASGOW, Scotland -- In Scotland, the government's plans to change the law to allow same-sex marriages has created an unlikely partnership. The local Muslim and Catholic communities have united to fight the proposed legislation.

Muslim and Catholic leaders in Glasgow have been meeting to challenge what they see as a major threat to the institution of marriage. Despite the differences between the two faiths, they see this issue as one they can unite behind.

"We are working with the Catholic community because our opinions are the same on this issue," said Bashir Maan, the spokesman for the Glasgow Central Mosque, the largest mosque in Scotland.

"The main point we want to make when it comes to defending marriage in Scotland is we'll work with anyone. If individuals other faith groups, organisations of any kind are willing to stand up and defend the long understood definition of marriage -- one man and one woman -- we're happy to collaborate with them," said John Deighan, the parliamentary officer for the Catholic Church.

"And the Muslim community here in Scotland have been quite clear that they too want to defend marriage," he added.

Maan is deeply concerned by what he sees as "very dangerous legislation."

"It will encourage and promote homosexuality and that will not be very good for society. Marriage is for procreation and marriage is the cornerstone on which society is built," he said.

Catholic leaders agree that the legislation poses a threat to Scottish society.

"Already in law, we have equality of property and right for people in same sex partnerships. However to redefine their partnerships to marriage is for me a negative thing," Deighan said.

"You can't redefine marriage. You can call it something else. It can be something else, but it can't be marriage. So we're saying to the Scottish government do not do this, because it goes against sense, it goes against tradition, it goes against common sense. Marriage cannot be redefined," he explained.

Maan is hoping that as Muslims and Christians unite together against this legislation, the Scottish government will take notice.

"I'm sure it is going to have a lot of influence on the government's decision. They have to listen to us, because there are so many thousands of people who are sending in their petitions back to the government saying they reject it," he noted.

More than 20,000 people have signed the petition against this legislation.

Deighan says the support for their postcard campaign has been overwhelming.

"It's been a good response. We've sent out a card summarising the core values why marriage is so important," he said.

Deighan also hopes the Scottish government will sit up and listen to the concern of so many people.

"We have had a society in Scotland where we've had more than a decade where there's been so many descenting voices from this militant liberal agenda and we're giving people opportunity to at last say, 'no, we actually believe in some of the traditional values society is founded on,'" he explained.

The Scottish government will reconvene this month to vote on their proposals to redefine marriage. Whatever the outcome, this issue has certainly united the religious groups of this city to work together to protect family values.

*Originally aired on December 9, 2011. 

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CBN News
Peter Wooding

Peter Wooding

CBN News United Kingdom Correspondent

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