CATHOLIC Bishop of Sandhurst Les Tomlinson says the church is "disappointed" with the outcome of the same-sex marriage postal survey, but will respect and accept the outcome.
He has called for the parliament to legislate “proper freedoms” following the announcement that Australia voted “yes” 61.6 per cent to 38.4.
Bishop Tomlinson described the result as the "narrowest of margins", and that the survey showed there were a large number of people in Australia who remained opposed to same-sex marriage.
"The Catholic Church will continue to promote and practice the tenet of our faith that marriage is a lifelong union of a man and a woman, open to the possibility of children," he said.
"The survey has confirmed that this is a position shared by millions of people in this country.
"The focus is now on our parliament to ensure that the proper freedoms are legislated to guarantee that the many people who remain in favour of the traditional definition of marriage are free to speak, teach and act on this belief."
At the start of the campaign, Bishop Tomlinson called for a “respectful” debate while claiming same-sex marriage would have “deeper effects” on society.
In Bendigo, 68.7 per cent voted “yes” while 31.3 per cent voted “no”.