Published: 11:50, 30 December 2017 |
Updated: 08:24, 02 January 2018
A retired vicar who hit the headlines for marrying a male Romanian model 50 years his junior told of his heartbreak after discovering his husband found a new boyfriend.
Reverend Philip Clements, 79, an ex-priest in Eastry near Sandwich, discovered Florin Marin, 24, is dating a new boyfriend called Jesus.
The pair married in April after the priest sold his £214,000 Eastry home to buy him a flat in his native city Bucharest. but Mr Marin broke up with him shortly after.
The beleaguered clergyman, who returned to Kent practically penniless in September, said: “I wasn't aware of it. Unless it's the Spanish man who works with him on TV.I will ask Florin if he has gone behind my back.
“When things were going well between us I assigned the flat to him legally in order to give him security when I die.
“I'm 79 and can't go on forever and I wanted him to have that security.
“So he has the flat and there is no way I can get it back, even if I wanted it back.”
Speaking to the MailOnline he added he doesn’t blame Mr Marin but admitted he was “foolish” to sacrifice his home.
He continued: “'It was of course foolish, it was heart over head, it really was a silly thing to do and giving him the property was a silly thing to do in retrospect.
“But it did not seem silly at the time, if it did I wouldn't have done it.”
The pair married in a low-key ceremony at Ramsgate Register Office in April this year.
They made a public stance against Church of England rules that bar clergymen from same-sex marriage.
But while married life started off well in their new flat in Bucharest, Romania - bought by Mr Clements when he sold his Eastry home - things went downhill.
The once honorary chaplain at Northbourne Park School says he became isolated and returned to the UK on September 24, relying on friends to put him up.
He continued: “It was I who suggested we move there because I wanted an adventure at my age- the final adventure.
"I loved Bucharest and I love Romania.
“I met his family and his parents, got on very well with them and I was just beginning to learn Romanian.”
But when Mr Marin began staying out late, frequenting nightclubs and cinemas, the relationship deteriorated.
He added: “I found that difficult, maybe twice a week he would go out. But I found it a bit difficult, I only knew a few of his friends and they did not speak much English.
“I was a bit isolated but that was my own doing really, I knew he would do that sort of thing.
“In the end we were having too many rows and it became impossible to stay with him.”
Mr Marin would become cross if he was woken up after getting home late at night or in the small hours of the morning, the priest added.
Since leaving Mr Clements has kept in touch with Florin, who came to see him two weeks ago, and admits he misses the man.
He even admitted he is keen to look for flats in the area when Florin visits in spring.
But in Romanian Florin told the media this week how he slept with his new boyfriend after being bought plane tickets to Alcante.
Speaking on Fashionista TV he said: "He wrote me on Facebook after learning that I had separated from Philip and told me he wanted to know me.
“I told him to buy the plane tickets, that I was not just going to get my money. He waited at the airport with white roses, I was pleasantly surprised.
“After that, we went to a gay club in Alicante, drank tonic and went to his home and slept together.”
Mr Clements, a former Dover Grammar School pupil, worked at libraries in Deal and Sandwich before beginning his training for the Anglican ministry and was once the chaplain of St Bart’s Hospital, Sandwich.
Since his retirement in 1999 he has helped out in the churches and schools of Eastry, Tilmanstone and Northbourne.
The Church of England’s rules state that clergy cannot enter same-sex marriages. Civil partnerships are allowed but must remain celibate.
The former parish priest said he had repressed his sexuality throughout his career because of the church’s stance on homosexuality but is now able to be his “true-self”.
The couple no longer take each other’s surnames.
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