While the Pope himself praised the anti-homosexual policies undertaken in the United States, the Spanish Episcopal Conference elected a new head yesterday. During the last years, the main Catholic hierarchy body in Spain had been headed by bishop Blazquez of Bilbao, who held conciliatory views on most social aspects of life, including dialogue with non ultra-Catholic groups. However, bishops Rouco of Madrid and Cañizares of Toledo, known in the leftist blogosphere as "the Toños" seem to have succeeded in renewing (in this case re-olding) Catholic views in Spain. The most ultraconservative views both bishops represent have been raised up and now Archbishop Antonio Maria Rouco Varela holds the position of President of the Spanish Episcopal Conference. Hopefully, Rouco will be celebrating his designation for a few days so that he won't immediately try to change the sign of the March 9th election in Spain, which he has already tried to influence during a mass demonstration in December 30th, 2007, with the Popular Party, allegedly the second political force in Spain, honeymooning with the Church. As the Financial Times puts it:
Instead of acting as a parliamentary opposition, the PP has tried to impugn constitutionally major initiatives of the Socialists, in an effort to paralyse government. Mariano Rajoy, its lacklustre leader, has failed to emerge from the shadow of José María Aznar, the former prime minister, and has colluded in a hysterical campaign by the Catholic hierarchy that calls into question the legitimacy of the government.
So, as we say around here, "el pescado está vendido". We'll see next monday if homosexuals can keep our rights here in Spain, or we'll have to seek for asylum in a much less Catholic place.