Homosexuality is 'just like rape', pastor claims
Craig Ledbetter gay couples were “hijacking” marriage
An Irish pastor has claimed homosexuality is “just like rape” during an interview about the upcoming Marriage Equality Referendum.
Craig Ledbetter from the Bible Baptist Church of Ballincollig in Cork said gay couples were “hijacking” marriage and insisted “it doesn’t belong to them”.
Mr Ledbetter also called for a conscience clause to be included in any future legislation and said he will not marry gay couples.
“I’d be in favour of a conscience clause, the same way I’d be in favour of the gardai not shooting me when I’m innocent,” Mr Ledbetter told the Cork News.
“It would violate my conscience as a religious leader. I will not marry a same sex couple. Homosexuality is a sexual sin, just like rape, just like adultery. If a rapist demanded his crimes to be recognised legally, we as a society wouldn’t allow it,” he added.
“When (same-sex marriage) is available elsewhere, you can’t force every religious group to provide it. We used to live in a free society. Of all people, liberals demand diversity. Now, they demand conformity. It’s wrong, wrong, wrong,”
Church of Ireland Bishop of Cork Paul Colton said Mr Ledbetter’s comments were “reprehensible”.
“I certainly would not want to make any comment on the reprehensible comparison that others may have drawn between homosexuality and the crime of rape,” Bishop Conlan told the Cork News.