This file photo taken on September 07, 2017 shows Britain's Prince George (C) accompanied by Britain's Prince William (L), Duke of Cambridge arriving for his first day of school at Thomas's school where he is met by Helen Haslem (R) head of the lower school in southwest London. (AFP/Richard Pohle )
A Scottish priest has caused a stir by expressing hope that four-year-old Prince George, who is third in line to the British throne, turns out to be gay so as to make the Church of England accept gay marriage.
Kelvin Holdsworth tweeted that English people could "pray in the privacy of their hearts (or in public if they dare) for the Lord to bless Prince George with a love, when he grows up, of a fine young gentleman".
"A royal wedding might sort things out remarkably easily though we might have to wait 25 years for that to happen," said Holdsworth, who is from the Scottish Episcopal Church.
Holdsworth, rector of St Mary's Cathedral in Glasgow, is himself gay and a campaigner for gay rights.
The Scottish Episcopal Church, a branch of the Anglican Church, voted in June to remove the reference in the wedding ritual to marriage being a union "between a man and a woman". It has since celebrated several same-sex marriages.
Anglican leaders in October disciplined the Scottish Episcopal Church in the same way as they did the US Episcopal Church in 2016 for approving gay marriage.
Gavin Ashenden, a former chaplain to Queen Elizabeth II, condemned Holdsworth's remarks.
"If you're going to pray for Prince George, pray for him to be happy... and pray for him to discharge his duty as prince, to be married and have children," he told The Times.
"It is not a kind prayer. It is not a blessing, it's more like a curse from a fairytale. I would say it's profoundly un-Christian," he said.