Three women who carried a giant plastic vagina during a march to celebrate Worker’s Day, held every year on May 1st, are facing charges of “crimes against religious sentiment”.
The three women, who have not been named, allegedly mimicked Spain’s famous Holy Week processions that take place in the run up to Easter.
The women “carried a plastic vagina a couple of metres high in the style of the Virgin Mary,” said the Seville-based judge.
Many Spanish religious festivals feature processions during which locals carry a statue of the Virgin Mary above their shoulders.
The prosecution argue that the women made a mockery of this religious practice by lifting the plastic vagina onto their shoulders and parading it during a march organized by the Spanish union the General Workers’ Confeneration (CGT) on May 1st 2014.
Some of the women also wore mantillas, the black lace veils commonly worn by devout Catholic women during religious celebrations in Spain while others sported the conical hoods commonly worn by the members of religious brotherhoods over Easter.
The three women have been ordered to appear in court in February 2016 for a crime against religious sentiments.
They join two secretaries of the CGT in Seville and Andalusia who had a lawsuit brought against them by the Spanish Assocation of Christian Lawyers for “provoking discrimination, hate and violence.”
Miguel Sevillano, head of the CGT in Seville told Europa Press that the women were part of a feminist group who had “nothing to do” with the CGT.
Sevillano did argue however that he did not see any similarity between the giant plastic vagina carried by the women and Spain’s usual Holy Week processions, but he stressed he had “nothing to do with its creation,” according to Europa Press.
Sevillano stressed that the march was in honour of Workers' Day, a public holiday in Spain.
The union “carries out no activities that allude to religious symbols” and “does not insult the Catholic Church”, he said, adding that the CGT was concerned with workers’ rights alone.