More than 60 same-sex couples got married on Sunday in San Juan, Puerto Rico. They exchanged their vows and rings at a mass ceremony, with a crowd of supporters cheering and taking photos.
The event became the result of the U.S. Supreme Court decision taken in June and requiring every state to allow same-sex marriages. Soon after that, an executive order was signed. Thus, this Sunday’s ceremony became a “celebration of the triumph of love” as organizer Ada Conde said.
Same-sex couples from Puerto Rico, Cuba, Venezuela, and the Dominican Republic took part in the event. Holding an umbrella with the colors of the rainbow, one of the gay rights activists said the ceremony was a historic moment for their community. After so many years, gay people can finally marry in Puerto Rico.
But this day wasn’t joyous for everybody – it was very sad for the Catholics, as the bishop of Arecibo, Monsignor Daniel Fernandez Torres said that a marriage can be shared only by woman and man and the same-sex couples are contrary to natural law.
Until now, Puerto Rico prohibited same-sex marriages and their recognition, but the government struck down the laws after the Supreme Court decision. Moreover, gay couples can also adopt children now. Recently, two executive orders were signed by Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla permitting transsexual and transgender people to change their gender on the driver’s license and protect their rights when getting medical help.