Pope Benedict XVI on Sunday was cut
short from delivering a speech on marriage in Madrid, Spain by a
freak storm that delivered strong winds and sheets of rain, the AFP
As many as 1.5 million pilgrims
gathered to hear the Holy Father speak at the airbase of Cuantro
Vientos as he wrapped up a 4-day tour.
While the Pope was unable to deliver
his complete comments, the speech was published by the Vatican.
“The Lord calls many people to
marriage, in which a man and a woman, in becoming one flesh, find
fulfillment in a profound life of communion,” he said.
He described marriage as a project of
true love marked by “complete self-giving.”
“For this reason, to acknowledge the
beauty and goodness of marriage is to realize that only a setting of
fidelity and indissolubility, along with an openness to God's gift of
life, is adequate to the grandeur and dignity of marital love.”
In 2005, Spain's Socialist government
led by Prime Minister Jose Zapatero legalized marriage between
members of the same sex. The Catholic Church has called for the
government's ouster. Last year, the
Pope said such marriages lead to confusion of society's values.
Benedict shielded from gay kiss-in.)