Is Pope Francis for gay marriage? According to the mainstream media it certainly appears that way. This all comes from two recent remarks the Pope made regarding gays in the Roman Catholic Church, the first on a plane on his way back from World Youth Day in Rio de Janerio, the second in an interview with a leading catholic magazine.
The interview with Rev. Antonio Spadaro, the editor of La Civilta Cattolica an international catholic magazine, was conducted over a three meeting span in August. At issue is a remark the Pope made about the Catholic Church being obsessed with gays and abortion. Is this really what he said? No.
“We cannot insist only on issues related to abortion, gay marriage and the use of contraceptive methods. This is not possible… The teaching of the church, for that matter, is clear and I am a son of the church, but it is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time,” he said.
The Pope was asked if the church needed to make reforms and what kind of church “he dreamed of”. He gave a rather lengthy and thoughtful answer. He said that “The church sometimes has locked itself up in small things, in small-minded rules.” He followed by saying the church needed to be more welcoming, opening its doors to all, finding a way to bring those who have left the church, back. He went on to talk about women who have had abortions and homosexuals who feel alienated from the church being some of those issues.
At no point in the conversation did Pope Francis say anything about being for gay marriage. He did reiterate the long standing teaching of the Church which is to “hate the sin, but love the sinner” and referred to the “Catechism of the Catholic Church” which is the official doctrine of the church. The catechism says that homosexuals must “be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity.” (CCC No. 2358) The church also believes that marriage is between a man and a woman and the purpose of marriage is to have children naturally, which is something that same-sex couples cannot do. Therefore gay marriage is unacceptable.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan of the New York Archdiocese and president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, explained it this way : “I think what he’s saying is sometimes if we come across as negative, as complaining too much, we lose the folks. We’ve got to be positive, we’ve got to be fresh, we’ve got to be affirming. … I think he’s on to something. He’s a good teacher.”
For years there are those, even Catholics, who have tried to make the Catholic Church conform to what they think it should be, but the church has refused. The Church has had the same teachings and beliefs since it was founded after the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Unlike churches of non-Catholic denominations which change their doctrines according to the wishes of the members, the Catholic Church steadfastly believes that their doctrines come directly from the teachings of Jesus Christ and will not change them.
Is Pope Francis for gay marriage? No, but he is for treating all human beings equally and as God’s children. And no matter how hard the LGBT activists try, they won’t get the Catholic Church to change its position on the matter.
Written by: Paul Roy