The Romanian Patriarchy announced Thursday it was categorically opposing a series of events that are part of the GayFest festival taking place in Bucharest these days. The Orthodox Church believes such occurrences in public areas are “an attack on morality, on the sacred institution of family and a danger for the younger generations”.

Representatives of the sexual minorities have retorted by saying that they have the right to express their sexual options freely and, additionally, that they support the idea of a legislation to allow for civil partnerships between gay couples, as an alternative to marriage.

Church representative Ciprian Campineanu said in a press conference on Thursday that the Church did not condemn people but their sin, when it comes to homosexuality.

“A march such as the one announced by gay organizations is an attack on the morality of public life, on the sacred institution of family and a danger for the formation of younger generations by exposing them to moral corruption”.

And Church spokesman Constantin Stoica said Orthodox priests would urge good Christians to protest against such manifestations, in an effort to prevent the Gay-Fest march due to take place on Saturday.

March organizer Octav Popescu said he expected some 1,000 people to join the march. “The more we are, the better”, he said.