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'You May Now Kiss The Groom' - The Pope in edgy new gay marriage artwork

by Simon Boyle. Published Wed 16 Jun 2010 19:00

This image of the Pope MARRYING two gay men is set to trigger a storm of protest in Ireland and around the world.

Entitled "You May Now Kiss The Groom", this edgy new artwork shows Pope Benedict XVI presiding over the wedding of two homosexuals.

Critically acclaimed Irish artist Kevin Sharkey produced the startling image after the Pontiff labelled gay marriage one of the most "insidious and dangerous" threats to the world today.

Donegal-born Sharkey, 47, says he hoped the work would put the Pope's claim in context, and show the couple in an innocent and inoffensive light.

The work goes on display at an exhibition of Sharkey's work in Dublin at the end of June, alongside other works in the Irishman's controversial collection.

The provocative artist caused a stir in 2009 with his image of glamour model Katie Price, merged with the face of notorious moors murderer Myra Hindley, entitled "Public Enemy Number One".

Sharkey said: "I got the idea for this piece when I read a newspaper headline, where the Pope had labelled gay marriage the biggest threat to our society.

"I am familiar with the traditional stance which the Catholic Church is expected to take, but I just felt condemning thousands of innocent people with such strong remarks is both unchristian and insulting.

"When I think all the evil in the World, from terrorism, to disease, to famine, I find it horrifying that a man with The Pope's incredible power and influence can only focus on something as minor as gay marriage.

"I think some of the recent revelations of disgraceful behaviour by Priests within the Catholic Church is much more evil and disturbing than two people who wish to formally express their love."

However, officials at the Roman Catholic church defended their leaders comments, labelling same sex unions "contrary to God's plan".

A spokesman for the church added: "God's plan for marriage includes the biological fact that a man and a woman can come together as male and female in a union that has the potential to generate new life.

"Same-sex unions, however, are incapable of realising the specific communion of persons that is marriage. Same-sex unions do not reflect the natural complementarity of man and woman through which the generation of new life becomes possible.

"Such unions are contrary to God's plan for sexual love which is intended for the relationship between husband and wife in marriage.

"Same-sex relationships by their very nature cannot be considered equal or almost equal to marriage."


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"There\'s nothing wrong with gay marriage... I don\'t know why people are so snooty" Lenny, London around 2 years, 1 month ago

"God's truth remains the same for all sinners. Evil is evil whether you, a gay person commits it or whether a preist commits a sin. " Praise God, florida around 5 years ago

"Hey John McGuire, you left the Catholic church and guess what - it does not miss you either - you big quiter" Jeanne, France around 5 years ago

""The chamber of secrets is indeed open again" -Dumbledore, Harry Potter & The Chamber of Secrets pg 180. It is written so it must be so" Kevin, Nashville around 5 years ago

"Kyle: to you, would it be okay to lovingly accept kids, for a gay couple that adopted. That's fine with me, and legal here! Love is good!" Eva , Sweden around 5 years ago

"God Is Love." kevin sharkey, Dublin around 5 years ago

"The bible says it's ok to own slaves too, so you people that are quoting what the bible says, are you for sale?" Wayne John, California around 5 years ago

"How do you get Love from a picture like that? Simple two minute photo shop job...." Ken, Usa around 5 years ago

"God help us all. Any sin makes us unclean and no one unclean may enter the kingdom of God. Humanity's only salvation is through Jesus." Travis, Rochester, IN around 5 years ago

"Romans 1:1-23 says absolutely nothing about gay marriage." Jeff, Durham, NC around 5 years ago

"Excellent job Mr. Sharkey! The Pope and his gang need to be exposed for the evil that they represent. " Jerry, USA around 5 years ago

"Dolorosa: Did you stone your neighbors to death the last time they worked on the Sabbath? It's your duty according to the Bible." Rubin, Dallas, TX around 5 years ago

"Christians are so full of hate. Why would anyone want to practice such a mean spirited and cruel religion?" CC423, USA around 5 years ago

"All you need is love, love...love is all you need. He loves you, yeah, yeah, YEAH:)!" Colleen, Chicago, USA around 5 years ago

"Denying self-exactly. Sin is tempting and can feel good but that doesnt make it right. Its not hating homo/hetrosexuals, its about the truth" Kyle, Minneapolis around 5 years ago

"Eva - marrying post menopause is alright - Catholic wedding vows merely state that you will accept children lovingly from God." Kyle, Minneapolis around 5 years ago

"In response to Kenneth Leary....the demise of the human race could be positive..example no more gulf spills or death of innocent animals!!! " ROBERT BURCENSKI, ILLINOIS, u.s.a. around 5 years ago

"A biblical sin - just like eating shellfish or wearing cotton blend clothes. So why doesn't the pope focus on those sins? Hypocrisy!" Robert, USA around 5 years ago

"Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction. Blaise Pascal " Vince, Upstate New York around 5 years ago

"The church functions in the dark ages with the belief that our 21st Century will bend to the threats of another Inquisition. " Vince, Upstate New York around 5 years ago

"The Catholic Church has all the answere but you cannot ask the questions. What about the male victims of the priests? Let him act on that. " Maens, Toronto around 5 years ago

"Many things we accept as normal are sins in the bible. Christians hypocritically pick and choose what to follow in it." Rayne, Kentucky, USA around 5 years ago

"Indeed the Pope is absolutely right! Gay marriage is insideous and evil because if everyone married the same sex the human race would end!" Kenneth Leary, United States around 5 years ago

"As a once practicing Catholic, such flagrantly ridiculous posturing and bigotry is just why I left the church!" John McGuire, USA around 5 years ago

"Matt: Yes, the pope is wrong. And "infallibility" is as bogus now as it was when Galileo was forced to renounce heliocentricity in 1616." Jamie, San Jose, CA around 5 years ago

"Just wanted to let you all know the Bible is just a book just like the Harry Potter Series its an act of fiction with magic in it." Matthew, Pittsburgh around 5 years ago

"Sodomy will never be the Christian life style - if you want to follow Christ you have to deny your very self - even if your gay! Get over it" Jeanne, France around 5 years ago

"Dolorosa, Even if it is a mortal sin, how is it "insidious and dangerous" to the world? It does not harm anyone else. The Pope is wrong." Matt, Raleigh, NC around 5 years ago

"Religion is the root of all evils! Remove religion from the world and you will find true peace. Religious nut jobs are funny though. :P" Squee, Heaven around 5 years ago

"Love the work..I also cannot 'get' WHY gay people want to emulate a FAILED institution (marraige). Heteros don't even believe in it!" Ferencz, Ohio USA around 5 years ago

"Now show some real artistic courage. Create a similar theme with a Muslim Imam presiding over a similar ceremony. Bet you won't...Coward!" William, AUstin, Texas around 5 years ago

"So people medically infertile, or who want to marry post menopause - thus conceiving no children - are they contrary to god's plan as well?" Eva , Sweden around 5 years ago

"Absolutely HYSTERICAL and right on the mark. He should focus on famine, hatred, intolerance and celebrate love, not call love evil" John, Sitges around 5 years ago

"It's a mortal sin. God's word in the Bible, Romans 1:1-23, tells us it's a sin so the Pope is right. " Dolorosa, Georgia around 5 years ago

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