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World Congress of Families unites anti-gay, pro-life campaigners in Verona

World Congress of Families unites anti-gay, pro-life campaigners in Verona

A plastic fetus miniature replica.

The World Congress of Families (WCF) has opened its doors today in the city of Verona, Northern Italy.

Italy’s Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini and Minister for Families Lorenzo Fontana are among this year’s panellists.

The European Parliament’s President Antonio Tajani was due to speak at the event. However, his name no longer appears on the list.

The three-day event, now in its 23rd year, will also see the participation of international speakers opposing LGBTI rights, such as Lucy Akello.

As Shadow Minister for Social Development, Akello supported a law in Uganda mandating the death penalty or life imprisonment for gay people.

Pray the gay away at the Congress

Anti-LGBTI and pro-life demonstrators are flocking to Verona.

LaRepubblica have interviewed those who have come from all across Italy to take part in the WCF.

Homosexuality is a ‘sin screaming for vengeance in front of God,’ says one of the interviewee. She carries a statue of the Virgin Mary with her.

‘We pray for gay people,’ she also says, explaining they are going to hell if they don’t repent.

A nun living in Tbilisi, Georgia, said LGBTI people threaten the concept of traditional family.

‘They’re loud, but there’s just a few of them. People might think it’s all around [gay people], but it’s not,’ she said.

When asked about the conditions of LGBTI people in Georgia, she said gay people there lead an ‘ugly life’.

A fetus replica to each participant

Created by a US coalition that promotes Christian values internationally, the WCF chose Verona to host the event in 2019.

The city officially announced to be ‘in favor of life’ at the end of 2018, passing a legal motion to fund pro-life organizations and oppose the law that decriminalized abortion in 1978.

Each WCF participant also had a fetus miniature replica as a welcome gift.

Workshops and panels have started this afternoon (29 March). The congress will culminate in a mass on Sunday 31 March, followed by a closing ceremony and the annual March for Families.

LGBTI advocacy group All Out organized a protest on 28 March to send a clear message of acceptance to the WCF.

More pro-choice and LGBTI counter-protests are expected to take place over the weekend.

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