.- The Diocese of Malaga, Spain, has made public its support for a protest scheduled for June 18 in Madrid in favor of traditional marriage and the family and against a government plan to make homosexual unions equal to marriage and allow them to adopt children. The Bishop of Malaga and President of the Committee on Education and Catechesis of the Bishops’ Conference of Spain, Antonio Dorado Soto, expressed his support for the event organized by the Spanish Forum on the Family, which hopes to bring together 500,000 people for the protest.
In a letter to his priests, Bishop Dorado Soto referred to Pope Benedict XVI’s message regarding the V World Meeting of Families, which will be held in June of 2006 in Valencia: “The Church cannot cease from proclaiming that, according to the plan of God, marriage and the family are irreplaceable and do not allow for alternatives.”
Three bishops have now publicly expressed their support for the protest: Bishop Jose Gea Escolano of Mondoñedo-Ferrol, Auxiliary Bishop Fidel Herraez of Madrid and the Bishop of Malaga. Although the Bishops’ Conference is not officially endorsing the event, the bishops will be able to mobilize their clergy, religious and lay movements to participate in the protest.
Debate on the government’s proposal will begin Wednesday with closed-door sessions considering amendments to the bill as well as two proposals to kill the measure. In order to receive a vote before the summer recess, the bill must be brought before the full congress by June 22.