Exhibition of same-sex snogging in churches outrages the Vatican; ban is slapped on gallery

A LETTER from the Vatican demanding the removal of photos from a Rome gallery of gay men and women kissing in churches claims that they are in violation of the Italian constitution and:

Could harm the religious sentiment of the faithful.

Galleria L’Opera responded by covering up the “offensive” photographs, taken by talented Spanish photographer and artist Gonzalo Orquín, who said:

A letter arrived from the Vicariate of Rome, an organisation that is part of the Vatican, which said the church is against the exhibition. I spoke to lawyers and for security reasons we decided not to show the photos.

Two of the images in the Rome exhibition

Two of the images in the Rome exhibition

The Vicariate admitted sending the threatening letter. A spokesman, Cladio Tanturri, said the photographs went against the Italian constitution.

Italian constitutional law safeguards an individual’s religious feeling and the function of places of worship. Therefore photos that are not suitable and do not conform to the spirituality of the place offend and infringe upon the advancement of man in the particular place for the expression of faith.

Orquín said all but one of the sixteen photographs in the exhibition were taken in churches in the city, and that both gay and straight people volunteered to pose.

We went to churches, took the photos at the altar and ran off…it’s a bit like a flash mob.

Orquín, who is himself Catholic, added:

A number of times we left because there were a people praying. It wasn’t easy.

Lawyers are currently working on the case, said Orquín, but for the time being, the photographs would remain covered up.

Flavio Romani, president of gay rights organization Arcigay, described the Vatican’s reaction as “grotesque”.

In the images in which the church have seen provocation, I see an exchange of love, a type of public worship that creates harmony not contrast…The indignation of the Catholic Church, therefore, is extremely grotesque.

Orquín, who is Spanish, but has lived in Rome for eight years, said from his experiences, he found Italy to be “a very homophobic country”.

He is quoted here as saying:

I am a Catholic and I believe in God. When I was child I learned that God is love, and I learned it in a church! What kind of love? Who decides what love is OK and why? Pope Francis has said recently that he is not one to judge anyone and he also said that the Roman Church belongs to every one.

Hat tip: Angela K.


20 responses to “Exhibition of same-sex snogging in churches outrages the Vatican; ban is slapped on gallery”

  1. sailor1031 says:

    And there, silly me, I thought the Vatican was a separate country with no right to interfere in the affairs of other sovereign nations……

  2. Broga says:

    This objection from the church which is infested with paedophiles. Isn’t there some about motes and eyes. But what we have here is a corrupt organisation setting itself up as an arbiter of its own morals and confident that it will get away with it.

  3. AgentCormac says:

    The photos ‘infringe upon the advancement of man’? FFS! This from an organisation that has spent the past two millennia doing everything it possibly can to snuff out any and all advancement (Galileo, anybody?). These idiots either have the collective memory span of a goldfish, or they are so used to living in la-la land that they genuinely can’t tell the difference between fantasy and reality any more.

  4. Matt+Westwood says:

    Shame on Galleria L’Opera for kowtowing. I would have kept the pictures up and made sure they were kept up until the fascists firebombed the city and armed gangs of rabid christians garotted all photographers in nooses hung from all the lamp-posts in the nation.

  5. jay says:

    Odd that they did not do the Scientology thing and sue over IP issues. (Many churches have photography restrictions) Like the kids who filmed a rude amateur video in a supermarket and posted it on youtube. They were sued for $750,000 by the supermarket chain.

  6. Ryan morrigan says:

    Someone needs to send the Vatican a chart comparing the number of times homosexuality is condemned in the bible with the number of times polygamy, incest, rape, pedophilia, sexual slavery, murder, genocide and torture are praised in the bible. Gee, cherry-picking to serve one’s own agenda much?? And by the way, I don’t recall Jesus ever saying anything about a massive city of gold and jewels (the Vatican) where one man (the pope) is worshipped as a god himself and dressed in clothes that cost more than most people will make in their lifetime. I believe I recall the bible mentioning sandals and rags. Point is, the Vatican/ RCC is the biggest sham and crock of hypocritical, materialistic, hatred-driven, ridiculously made-up fairytale bullshit ever, and no one seems to see it. TRIVIA: DID YOU KNOW THAT THE POPE HAS A SPECIAL, INSANELY ORNATE THRONE OF A CHAIR WITH A HOLE IN IT USED FOR MEDICAL INSPECTION OF HIS SACRED BALLS? No joke.

  7. John the Drunkard says:

    “…Vatican was a separate country with no right to interfere in the affairs of other sovereign nations……”

    A separate country brought into existence by a ‘special’ treaty with Mussolini in 1929.

  8. charlie says:

    Well, when you run one of the biggest criminal enterprises known to human kind, you can get away with this sort of crap. If enough people stand up and call bull shit on ALL religion things will change.

  9. T says:

    The pope can same sex kiss my ass.

  10. T says:

    Except that I wouldn’t turn my back on any cleric within a ten metre radius. Don’t trust any of them you see.

  11. barriejohn says:

    T: Watch what you say. Some of us are gay.

  12. Angela_K says:

    Ryan Morrigan, I came across the Pope’s “special chair” some time ago. As you probably know, the chair is so that the Pope’s undercarriage can be verified as male. Perish the thought a woman impersonate a man to become Pope!

  13. remigius says:

    And there, silly me, I thought the Vatican was a separate country with no right to interfere in the affairs of other sovereign nations……

    Yeah, just like the good ol’ US of A!

  14. Matt+Westwood says:

    @Ryan: Apparently the reason for the testicular inspection chair was to make sure the blasphemous travesty of Pope Joan was never to be repeated (s/he was the pope who suddenly gave birth in the middle of a solemn pompous-and-circumstantial ritual) and it was decided that every prospective pope would have his genitalia examined to ensure he did indeed have all the correct bits and pieces.

  15. Trevor Blake says:

    Jesus spent the night with the Bethany Youth, who ‘loved Jesus the most.’ This youth was called Lazarus, whom Jesus ‘raised’ and ‘taught secrets’ to. The Bethany Youth was with Jesus, naked, on the night He was betrayed by a man’s kiss.

    So, yeah, tell me more about the problems with showing naked men and kissing men in Churches. Please, please tell me all about it.

  16. Robster says:

    All this apparent offense is coming for an organisation that like nothing more than dangling plastic dead jews, nailed to obscene stone age torture devices on the walls of their various establishments, then happily pop in on Sundays for a brunch munch of fillet of jesus with a yummy blood of jesus chaser. And they recon that kind of seriously sick behaviour is somehow normal and to be encouraged. Why does it matter in any way what the Vatican says about anything? These are compromised old men in silly hats that spend their lives playing “let’s pretend”. They have nothing of value to offer.

  17. Angela_K says:

    It is not just the Vatican. One complaint gets Danuta Gray’s nude paintings censored. 100:1 it was a religious person who complained.

  18. Broga says:

    @Angela_K: Quite amazing that Danuta Gray’s superb nude paintings were censored. As one of the comments said so pertinently that teacher who complained had gone a long way towards teaching her pupils that the female body is repellent. You can be sure that the teacher is religious. Their toxic attitude to anything that might indicate sexual activity, and that is the sub text to this, poisons everything that it influences.

    Whoever that teacher is I would be disturbed if she were teaching my children.