Archbishop of Toledo stirs outrage with sermon implying women are the cause of domestic violence

Nov. 7th march in Madrid against gender violence. Photo: El País
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• Catholic leader says women’s refusal to submit to men at root of violence

• Outraged women across Spain hit back at prelate’s comments on social media

The Spanish archbishop of Toledo, Braulio Rodríguez, has sparked controversy with comments made during a sermon that implied that the cause of domestic violence is a woman’s stubborn refusal to bow to the demands of her partner or husband.

The Catholic church leader also said that in many cases the violence stems from the woman having asked for a separation from her husband and questioned the use of the term “gender violence,” implying it is being used by feminist ideologues to drum up publicity for their cause.

In a country where 57 women died from domestic violence during 2015 and two more have already been killed by their partners so far in 2016, the archbishop’s comments infuriated many Spanish women, who took to social media in large numbers to criticize his comments.

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