By Peter J. Smith

  ROME, April 2, 2007 ( – The new head of the Italian bishops conference has made political waves by asking on what basis may incest and pedophilia be denied if Italy legalizes same-sex unions and other alternatives to the family.

  Archbishop Angelo Bagnasco of Genoa, who was appointed last month to lead the Italian Bishops Conference, is spearheading efforts of the Catholic Church in Italy against legislation giving unmarried unions – including same-sex ones – legal status and benefits.

“Why say ‘no’ to forms of legally recognised co-habitation which create alternatives to the family? Why say ‘no’ to incest?” the Archbishop said at a meeting of Church workers, according to the Italian journal, La Repubblica.

“Why say ‘no’ to the pedophile party in Holland?” Bagnasco stated, referring to the Dutch Brotherly Love, Freedom and Diversity party, which lobbies to reduce the age of consent from 16 to 12 and legalize child pornography.

  Supporters of the “DICO” bill, which would grant legal recognition of opposite and same-sex civil unions and benefits, immediately objected that the Archbishop had equated the legislation with pedophilia and incest.

  Environment minister Alfonso Pecoraro Scanio, a vociferous advocate of the homosexual agenda, said Archbishop Bagnasco had created a “grave, foolish comparison which offends millions of people”.

  However, an editorial in Avvenire, the official newspaper of the Italian Bishops Conference, dismissed the controversy as a “storm in a teacup”, saying that Archbishop Bagnasco had merely illustrated the fact that family policy must be founded on principles other than whichever way public opinion gravitates.

“No equating DICO with incest or pedophilia, then, in his words,” the newspaper said.

  In other words, the Church is emphasizing family policy must have a basis in natural law and the moral order, or else public opinion someday may justify with law destructive sexual relationships once believed inconceivable, even well beyond homosexual unions.

  Italy’s bishops have called on Catholic politicians to vote against the bill backed by Prime Minister Romano Prodi, warning that it undermines traditional marriage and the family, which Pope Benedict XVI has called a "pillar of humanity."

  Benedict XVI has warned that projects legalizing pseudo-marriage arrangements are “dangerous and counterproductive” to the health of society by “weakening and destabilizing the legitimate family based on marriage."

"Only the foundation of complete and irrevocable love between man and woman is capable of forming the basis of a society that becomes the home of all men.”

  See related coverage by LifeSiteNews:

  Italian Government Approves Bill to Recognize Civil Unions

  Pope: Legal Recognition of Gay Unions is “Dangerous and Counterproductive”

  Vatican Says Italian Government Wants to "Eradicate" Traditional Family

  Head ‘Justice and Peace’ Cardinal Fights Gay Civil Unions in Italy

  New Italian Government in Clash With Vatican over Homosexual Civil Unions