(CTN News) – Despite strong resistance from the powerful Orthodox Church, the centre-right government of Greece said on Thursday that it will carry out its promise to allow same-sex marriage.
According to government spokesman Pavlos Marinakis, the law will be introduced to parliament within the current term of the house, which concludes in 2027.
The remark follows a strong rejection of the measure expressed in a 1,500-word opinion delivered late Wednesday by the Church’s governing Holy Synod.
The primary point made by the Church was that homosexual couples are treating their children as “companion pets” and “accessories” when it comes to childrearing.
Marinakis meant that they always respectfully listen to the Church’s viewpoints. “However, we are also carrying out our policy and will consider the opinions of all relevant parties, as well as society, civil society, the general public, and institutions.”
In light of Greece’s international rights commitments, the Church maintains that expanding marriage rights would compel the country to grant parental rights in due course.
According to the Church of Greece’s stance, children have an inherent need and, by extension, a right to be raised by a male and a female parent. “This cannot be evaded by any amount of social modernization or political correctness,” the Church bulletin proclaimed.
A child is not a “companion pet” for someone who wants to feel protective, and neither is it a “accessory” to legitimize or normalize same-sex cohabitation, it noted.
The comment became a major story in Greek news outlets.
According to surveys, Greeks are on the fence on same-sex marriage but strongly against gay couples having full parenting rights.
A U.S. organization established to track prejudice against LGBTQ+ persons, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, reports that 34 nations around the world have legalized same-sex marriage.
Greece is unique among these nations in that it is home to a predominantly Orthodox Christian population; nonetheless, a few of these nations have recently recognized civil partnerships.
While opposition parties on the left and centre-left typically favour the government’s promise, prominent conservatives in Greece’s ruling coalition have openly voiced both support and criticism.
After winning the party leadership election a few weeks earlier, Stefanos Kasselakis, the country’s left-wing opposition leader, wed his male partner in New York in October.
In 2015, Greece passed a law making same-sex civil partnerships lawful.