Hanfords lead Catholic protest of gay marriage at busy Port Orange intersection in advance of US Supreme Court ruling

Maredy & Walt Hanford lead protest against gay marriage in Port Orange, Fl / Headline Surfer
Video by Headline Surfer® /
Maredy Hanford speaks with HeadlineSurfer.com while her husband, Walter Hanford, and 18 other Catholics lead a protest at a well-travelled Port Orange intersection against gay marriage on Saturday.

PORT ORANGE, Fla. -- The honking cars and loud cheers from passing motorists were like symphony music to the ears Maredy Hanford and nearly two dozen other parishioners from Our Lady of Hope Catholic Church in Port Orange at the intersection of Ridgewood and Dunlawton avenues.

They were there from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday protesting gay marriage.

Mareda & Walt Hanford lead protest at Port Orange intersection against gay marriage / Headline Surfer®Photos for Headline Surfer® /
Above: A large banner displays the theme of a peaceful protest of local Catholics led by Maredy and Walter Hanford at an intersection Saturday in Port Orange: 'God's Marriage = 1 Man + 1 Woman.'
At left: Maredy Hanford, with brown hat, goes over plans with fellow protesters at the intersection of Dunlawton and Ridgewood avenues.
Below: Maredy Hanford and other Catholics say a prayer during a peaceful protest against gay marriage.
 

The Hanfords could not have picked a better locale in all of Port Orange -- standing on the south side of Dunlawton Avenue at the intersection with Ridgewood Avenue, aka US 1, with the beaches on the other side of the Dunlawton Bridge to the east, New Smyrna Beach to the south on Ridgewood and South Daytona and Daytona Beach to the north.

They were there from noon to 2 p.m. under the hot Florida sun with nearly two dozen members of their church that were part of a national Rosary Rally in advance of the US Supreme Court's expected ruling on the constitutionality of gay marriage.

Maredy Hanford insisted in an interview with Headline Surfer® from the scene of the peaceful demonstration that true marriage is exclusively "between a man and a woman" and "as God intended it." 

Hanford said she and her husband, Walter, both 55 and married for 30 years with two grown sons, are mindful of the upcoming ruling expected by month's end from the US Supreme Court regarding same-sex marriages.

"We want to have the law of the land to be marriage as it is in the Bible," she told the internet newspaper in a video interview, presented with this story.

Maredy Hanford / Headline Surfer®Maredy Hanford, shown here, insisted in an interview with Headline Surfer® from the scene of the peaceful demonstration that true marriage is exclusively "between a man and a woman" and "as God intended it." 

Hanford said she and her husband, Walter, both 55 and married for 30 years with two grown sons, are mindful of the upcoming ruling expected by month's end from the US Supreme Court regarding same-sex marriages.

"We want to have the law of the land to be marriage as it is in the Bible," she told the internet newspaper in a video interview, presented with this story.

Here's what's at issue before the High Court as described by USA Today, which points out that most legal experts predict the court, led by Justice Anthony Kennedy, will rule in favor of the gay and lesbian couples:

• Same-sex marriage -- A ruling on the constitutionality of same sex marriage is likely to occur in the final days of the current term of the court; perhaps June 29 or 30. The justices are expected to decide whether gay and lesbian couples have a constitutional right to marry or whether state bans against gay marriage will stand.

• The justices have consolidated cases from six states for the historic ruling: Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, and Tennessee, with a total of 32 plaintiffs asking for the right to marry or to have marriages licensed elsewhere recognized in their home states.

Catholics protesting gay marriage in Port Orange, FL / Headline Surfer®While the Hanfords understand the US Supreme Court may rule in favor of same-sex mrriage, they are praying the justices find the wisdom to support the Christian values from which this country was fiunded even as the Constitution emphasizes the separation of chruch and state.

While Maredy Hanford dealt with organizing the protesters, husband, Walter, focused on holding up one side of the main banner sign that read: "God's Marriage = 1 Man + 1 Woman."

The demonstration was mostly well-received, he said.

"For the most part we had very supportive feedback from drivers," Walter Hanford said.

Asked if they had to deal with naysayers, including those who may have given the proverbial middle finger, Hanford responded, "Yes, there were a few people that expressed themselves in a crude manner. They were the exception. Most people were civil and positive."

Asked if they had to deal with naysayers, including those who may have given the proverbial middle finger, Walter Hanford responded, "Yes, there were a few people that expressed themselves in a crude manner. They were the exception. Most people were civil and positive."

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Short Bio

Henry Frederick is publisher of Headline Surfer®, the award-winning 24/7 internet news outlet covering the Daytona Beach-Sanford-Orlando metro area via HeadlineSurfer.com for a decade now. A longtime cops & courts reporter focused on breaking news & investigative reporting, Frederick is among the Sunshine State's most prolific daily news reporters, having amassed dozens of journalism-industry awards in print anddigital platforms. Frederick is enrolled at Full Sail University in Winter Garden, FL, where he's three-fourths through the online Master of Arts program in New Media Journalism. His graduation is in August.