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Pope Benedict Denounces Gay Marriage During Annual Christmas Message: An 'Attack' on the Traditional Family unions can "actually harm and help destabilize marriage."

Pope Benedict XVI arrives for his weekly general audience on December 19, 2012 at Paul VI hall at the Vatican. Credit: AFP/Getty Images

VATICAN CITY (TheBlaze/AP) -- Gay marriage activists are going to be more than outraged by the pope's recent comments about homosexuality. The Catholic leader has taken his opposition to gay marriage to new heights with a strong denunciation of how people today are manipulating their sex and gender to alter their God-given nature.

Benedict made the comments Friday in his annual Christmas speech to the Vatican bureaucracy -- one of his most important speeches of the year and one he dedicated this year to promoting family values.

Pope Benedict XVI arrives for his weekly general audience on December 19, 2012 at Paul VI hall at the Vatican. Credit: AFP/Getty Images

In it, Benedict quoted the chief rabbi of France in saying the campaign for granting gays the right to marry was an "attack" on the traditional family made up of a father, mother and children.

Benedict also issued a denunciation of gay marriage in his recently released annual peace message, saying gay marriage, like abortion and euthanasia, was a threat to world peace.

Pope Benedict XVI delivers his blessing during the Angelus prayer from his studio overlooking St. Peter's square at the Vatican, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2012. Credit: AP

"Those who insufficiently value human life, and in consequence, support among other things the liberalization of abortion perhaps do not realize that in this way they are proposing the pursuit of a false peace," since peace presupposes protecting the weakest, he wrote in this previous message.

Laws granting legal status for gay unions, he said, "actually harm and help destabilize marriage" by obscuring its specific nature as a union between man and woman that forms the basis of society.

One last thing…
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