Women protest during pope's address at St Peter's Square

Mon, Jan 14, 2013, 00:00

Tempora mutantur et nos mutamur in illis – times change and we change with them. Or so it seemed in St Peter’s Square yesterday when four activists from the Ukraine feminist group “Femen”, staged a topless protest during Pope Benedict’s Sunday Angelus address.

Shouting “Homophobe, shut up” at the distant figure of Benedict, who was speaking from his apartment window, the four women quickly stripped to the waist just minutes after he had begun his homily.

To the surprise of the pilgrims, the four women, with a “In Gay We Trust” painted on their backs, shouted and screamed as they were forcibly dragged out of the square by police forces.

One woman pilgrim was more outraged than surprised and set about one of the protesters with her umbrella, screaming at her, “You are the devil, enough, enough!”

The Femen group was registering its opposition to Pope Benedict who in the last month has been highly critical of gay marriage, arguing that it destroys “the very essence of the human creature”.

Yesterday’s protest coincided with an anti-gay-marriage protest march in Paris.