Vincent Nichols, the Archbishop of Westminster, used his sermon at Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve to accuse ministers of acting to legalise same-sex marriage in defiance of public opinion.
The Coalition has said it will change the law to allow homosexual couples to marry. It says churches that do not wish to hold same sex marriages will not have to, and the Church of England will be excluded from the legislation.
The plans have been criticised by dozens of Conservative MPs, and campaigners opposed to the new law say there is no public support for the change. Roman Catholic leaders have been among the fiercest critics if the plan.
Archbishop Nichols said that the Government consultation on the plan had shown that respondents were "7-1 against same-sex marriage".