PETA Delivers Vegan Ham To The Pope

For Immediate Release:

24 December 2014


Ben Williamson +44 (0) 20 7837 6327, ext 229; [email protected]

His Holiness Asked to Set an Example of Peace and Mercy by Celebrating a Cruelty-Free Vegan Christmas

Vatican City – On Tuesday morning, a group of PETA supporters – wearing Santa hats and other festive apparel – delivered a unique Christmas gift to the Vatican: a delicious vegan ham for His Holiness Pope Francis I to enjoy, along with a letter from PETA US’ director of Christian outreach and engagement asking him to send a message of peace and mercy by celebrating a vegan Christmas. After delivering the basket, the PETA supporters headed to St Peter’s Square, where they distributed free faux-ham slices to the gathered holiday crowds.

“We can’t think of a better way to celebrate Jesus’ birth and hope for all creation than with a meal that no one had to suffer and die for,” says PETA Director Mimi Bekhechi. “By celebrating a cruelty-free Christmas, His Holiness can send a loving message to Christ’s followers around the world about our role as faithful and merciful stewards of God’s creatures.”

As PETA US – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat” – notes in its letter to the pope (available here), animals in today’s meat, egg and dairy industries suffer immensely. Animals raised for food may be castrated, branded with hot irons, have parts of their beaks and tails cut off or have their horns gouged out or burned off—all without any painkillers. At slaughterhouses, animals are shackled and their throats are cut, often while they’re still conscious.

For more information about PETA US’ Christian outreach programme, please visit People who want to get healthier, go green and help animals can visit to order a free vegan starter kit.