Quakers in Britain have warmly welcomed the overwhelming support given yesterday (4 February) by MSPs to the Marriage and Civil Partnership (Scotland) Bill.This will allow Quakers to marry same-sex couples in Quaker meeting houses.
Scottish MSPs listened to public opinion despite organised opposition. The MSPs agreed the motion with 105 votes for, 18 against and no abstentions.
Under the Bill, religious bodies will opt in to perform same-sex ceremonies.
Welcoming the move, Scottish Quaker Phil Lucas said: “Scottish Quakers are delighted that this Bill has been passed which will bring marriage equality to Scotland, which we have been working towards. Quakers warmly support this move and look forward to celebrating such marriages in our meeting houses.”
Juliet Prager, Deputy Recording Clerk, said "We welcome this new legislation. Quakers have recognised same-sex marriage since 2009 because we see God in everyone and believe all committed couples should be treated equally. We are delighted that all couples in our community in Scotland will be able to marry. In England and Wales same-sex weddings will be able to take place from 29 March, and it is right that Scottish couples will be treated the same as soon as possible."
Quakers are known formally as the Religious Society of Friends. Around 23,000 people attend nearly 475 Quaker meetings in Britain. Their commitment to equality, justice, peace, simplicity and truth challenges them to seek positive social and legislative change.
The background and history of Quaker support for equal marriage can be read here http://www.quaker.org.uk/samesexbriefing