Church’s rights

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Perhaps Neil Barber (Letters, 25 January) should be made aware that the problem with the 
National Secular Society’s 
challenge against St Margaret’s Children and Family Care Society in Glasgow is that it is 
seeking to coerce a Catholic adoption agency into conforming to a view of the family at odds with Christian belief.

Just as the Church’s opposition to same-sex “marriage” derives from its belief that a marriage between a man and a woman is in the best interests of society, so its opposition to same-sex adoption derives from its conviction that a child’s best interests are served by being brought up by a man and a woman.

It is not that the Church in each case “opposes gay rights”: it is that the Church is in favour of the rights of children, and the duty of the state to protect ­marriage. The good of society and ­children is best protected by reserving some legal privileges to marriage and restrictions on the right to adopt.

There are many different rights at stake in this question: the common good of society, the rights of children, and so on. Legislating for gay “rights” to marriage and adoption creates new victims. A focus that puts the child first leads naturally to opposing same-sex marriage and adoption.

Martin Conroy


East Lothian