Measures to stop schools, companies and other agencies refusing people services because of their sexualtity will be put in place in April, the government says.
Ms Kelly said gay people needed protection from discrimination
Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly said gays and lesbians needed effective protection from discrimination.
Ministers are reportedly divided over how far the proposals should go following complaints from some religious groups.
The regulations were due to be put into effect this month but were delayed.
Some faith schools have complained new rules might force them to let gay groups hold meetings out of hours.
Catholic adoption agencies say they fear being compelled to allow gay couples to adopt.
Ms Kelly told the Commons there had been more than 3,000 responses to consultations on the issue and it would take time to look at them.
The issue is seen as particularly sensitive because Ms Kelly is a devout Catholic.
But the minister says this will not prevent her from doing her job of tackling dicrimination of all types, including that against homosexuals.