A bill which seeks to make Britain the 15th nation to legalize gay marriage was approved by the House of Lords on its second reading Tuesday, leaving little doubt the bill will become law.

After roughly 3 hours of debate, members approved the measure with a voice vote. The House of Commons approved the measure last month. The bill now heads to the committee stage.

An amendment aimed at derailing the project was widely defeated by a 390-148 margin. The “wrecking amendment,” as it has been dubbed by the media, sought to allow straight couples to enter civil partnerships. Opponents were disappointed by the meager support the amendment received.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, told colleagues that he could not support the bill because it would diminish and devalue marriage.

“The concept of marriage as a normative place for procreation is lost. The idea [of] marriage as covenant is diminished. The family in its normal sense, predating the state, and as our base community of society, as we have already heard, is weakened,” he said. (The video is embedded on this page. Visit our video library for more videos.)

Writing in the Financial Times, Lord Browne, the former BP chief executive who publicly came out gay in 2007, argued that marriage equality was good for business.

“People are happier and more productive and make more money for their company when they feel they are included and can be themselves,” he wrote. “Giving gay couples the freedom to marry sends an important signal of inclusiveness.”