Gays protest at St Mary s reopening
Gays protest at St Mary's reopening

The grand reopening of Perth's St Mary's Cathedral has been marred by gay and lesbian activists protesting the Catholic church's anti-condom policy and attitude towards homosexuality.

About 20 protestors, bearing placards with slogans including "Jesus is gay", congregated across the street from the cathedral's main entrance for the silent protest.

Tonight marks the cathedral's official rededication ceremony after a $33.9 million renovation program.

Men dressed as nuns from an activist group that dubs itself the "Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence" offered condoms to passersby, including invited clergymen. Others waved bunched of helium-inflated condoms in the air.

Protest organiser Neil Buckley said some churchgoers "had a go at" the protestors.

The group had hoped to confront Sydney's Cardinal George Pell, whose views on homosexuality have often put him at odds with activists.

"There is an issue with the policies against gays and lesbians in the church. They really need to end the ban on the use of condoms that really is killing people in Africa," Mr Buckley said.

The rededication ceremony began at 5pm with 300 priests and 33 bishops from around Australia resplendent in formal attire, marching in a procession into the cathedral.

Invited dignitaries include Premier Colin Barnett, WA Governor Dr Ken Michael, Federal deputy opposition leader Julie Bishop and Foreign Affairs Minister Stephen Smith.

The West Australian

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