Catholic cardinal: Irish people are ‘worse than Pagans’ for passing same-sex marriage

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Catholic cardinal Raymond Burke has claimed that people in Ireland are worse than Pagans, because they overwhelmingly passed same-sex marriage.

Last week, people in the Republic of Ireland overwhelmingly voted to approve civil same-sex marriage in a referendum, by a margin of 62.1% to 37.9%.

As equality activists have hailed the decision, a number of senior Catholics have slammed the country – with the Vatican claiming the result is a “defeat for humanity”.

US Cardinal Raymond Burke, who serves as the patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta within the Vatican, slammed the country while speaking to Catholic group the Newman Society at Oxford University.

According to the Tablet, he complained: “I mean, this is a defiance of God. It’s just incredible. Pagans may have tolerated homosexual behaviours, they never dared to say this was marriage.”

Burke is one of the most notorious anti-gay Cardinals within the Catholic Church.

He has previously called for parents to keep their children away from gay relatives, saying: “If homosexual relations are intrinsically disordered, which indeed they are as reason teaches us and also our faith, then what would it mean to grandchildren to have present at a family gathering a family member who is living [in] a disordered relationship with another person?”

Cardinal Burke has also claimed that gay people are “intrinsically evil” and insisted: “[Homophobia is] simply announcing the truth, helping people to discriminate right from wrong in terms of their own activities.”

He was demoted from his previous position last year – but continues to hold an influential role within the Church.