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Good news for gay couples wanting to marry in church

Monday 14th February, 2011

two bridegrooms - one lifting the other up in the air, both smiling.

Gay couples will be allowed to marry in church under new laws to be announced this week.

It will end the ban on civil partnerships being conducted by priests or other religious officials and permit prayers and hymns.

The decision by Liberal Democrat Equalities Minister Lynne Featherstone will make gay couples officially husbands and lesbian couples wives.

There are no plans to compel religious organisations to hold ceremonies and the Church of England has said it would not allow its churches to be used.

It is not clear whether the proposals will suggest that civil ceremonies in religious surroundings could incorporate elements such as hymns or Bible readings or be formally described as marriages.