During a press conference on the papal plane Sunday, Pope Francis answered questions about homosexuality and gay priests to press from The Wall Street Journal, confessing that judging one’s sexuality is not for him to do, as long as that person seeks the Lord.
Media filled Pope Francis’ plane as he headed to the Vatican from World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro. Casually leaning over the chair, like a child looking behind him, the Holy Father fielded questions during the mid-flight press conference. Making the rounds in today’s media is his astonishing statement about gay people, considering the Catholic Church’s stance on homosexuality and his predecessor’s ruling.
While some members of the Catholic Church have made their opinions regarding same-sex marriage well known, such as Cardinal Dolan, others have taken a more subtle approach, stripping homosexual volunteers of their duties following a wedding announcement.
Pope Benedict XVI and the Vatican banned men from entering the priesthood with “deep-seated” homosexuality, however Pope Francis’ comments take a different outlook, making history, following a question which asked the Pontiff how he would feel if a “cleric within his ranks were gay, although not sexually active.”
Who am I to judge a gay person of goodwill who seeks the Lord? You can’t marginalize these people.
Pope Francis went on to say that the purported “gay lobby” would be a problem due to a pressure group existing within the Vatican, not because of one’s orientation.
You have to distinguish between the fact of a person being gay, and the fact of a lobby. The problem isn’t having this orientation. The problem is making a lobby.
His Holiness also responded to two other weighted issues of the Catholic Church during the one hour and twenty minutes press conference back to Rome, sexual abuse and women priests. Replying to an inquiry of one of his top adviser’s sex life, which Pope Francis said an investigation has “found nothing”, the Pontiff touched on the sexual abuse of minors.
Many times in the church one goes in search of the sins of youth, and this gets published. While criminal conduct—such as the sexual abuse of minors—should be punished, sins should be forgiven once a person confesses…when the Lord forgives, He forgets.
Pope Francis looked to Pope John Paul II who declared “definitively” that women could not be ordained as priests, despite the many who are leaving the Catholic Church to be ordained within the faith. To answer the backlash of those women who want greater involvement, Pope Francis would like to create a “theology of the woman” within the Church. Source: The Wall Street Journal.
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