Outspoken gay Catholic bishop Pat Buckley was due to marry his Filipino boyfriend Eduardo Yango in Larne, Co Antrim, but his partner got cold feet and decided to postpone the civil marriage.

Buckley, 57,  said the extensive media coverage of the marriage forced Yango to have "a little postponement" yesterday.

Buckley would have been the first Catholic cleric to enter a same-sex marriage and continue to practice as a member of the clergy.

"We have had 10 days of intense media interest and, while I have been used to dealing with the media for 25 years, Eduardo has no experience of the media and has found the intrusion very stressful. He is also a very private person and comes from a culture in the Philippines where family and personal issues are handled very discreetly and privately,” said Buckley.

Buckley said that Yango had to "de-stress and to resolve some family issues," and he was confident that they would marry when these issues were resolved.

Yango’s parents were unaware of his plans to marry Buckley, but they eventually found out when word of the gay marriage spread around the world.

"Who would have thought that a little tinpot civil partnership would be reported worldwide?” continued Buckley, adding that, when it came to matters of sexuality, the Philippines “is extremely conservative and socially is where Ireland was 30 or 40 years ago.”