A group of protesters demonstrating
against Pope Benedict XVI's opposition to gay marriage were swiftly
turned away by police as they attempted to enter St. Peter's Square
in the Vatican on Sunday as the Holy Father appeared at his studio
window to give his weekly address to pilgrims and tourists.
Police blocked the activists from
entering the square.
The demonstrators, estimated at 15,
carried signs in Italian and English with sayings such as “Homophobia
= death,” “Marriage for all” and “Gay unions don't harm
peace, weapons do.” The AP
reported that police confiscated the placards of four activists.
In his message for the January 1 World
Day of Peace, Benedict suggested that marriage equality harms justice
Gay unions are an “offense against
the truth of the human person, with serious harm to justice and
peace,” Benedict said.
“We find intolerable the assertion
that gay unions are dangerous to the world,” Gianfranco Mascia, 52,
who organized the protest, told Reuters. “Weapons are much more
dangerous. No to arms, yes to rights for everyone.”
Benedict: Gay marriage is an attempt to harm society.)