Military Chapels and same sex marriage

Slow progress in this area was anticipated by both Houses when the Regulations were debated last year

On 7 December, Madeleine Moon (Bridgend)(Lab) asked the following “Named day” question on religious buildings on military bases, [18992]:

“To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many military chapels there are in England and Wales; and how many such chapels are registered to conduct (a) same-sex and (b) other marriages”.

In reply, the Minister of State (Ministry of Defence) (Minister for the Armed Forces), Penny Mordaunt, (Portsmouth North) (Con) answered on 14 December:

“There are 190 military chapels in England and Wales registered for marriages under the rites of Church of England or otherwise, as described under sections 69 and 70 [respectively] of the 1949 Marriage Act. The Ministry of Defence allows same-sex marriages in military chapels, but none of the Sending Churches [Anglican, Roman Catholic, Methodist, Church of Scotland, Presbyterian, Baptist Union, United Reformed, Congregational, Free Church of Scotland, Elim Pentecostal, Assemblies of God, Salvation Army] using the chapels currently allows same-sex marriages to be conducted there. I have asked the Chaplaincies of the three Services to advise me on how Parliament’s sanction of same sex-marriages may be fully implemented”. Continue reading