November 27, 2020

Pope Francis Calls For Same Sex Civil Union Law In New Documentary

Francis becomes 1st pope to endorse same-sex civil unions

Pope Francis has called for legislation to protect same-sex couples, according to comments he made in a new documentary that mark a break from Catholic doctrine.

With this comment, Francis becomes the first pope to endorse same-sex civil unions.

The Pope’s comment came midway through the documentary “Francesco,” which premiered at the Rome Film Festival.

The film, which features fresh interviews with the pope, delves into issues Francis cares about most, including the environment, poverty, migration, racial and income inequality, and the people most affected by discrimination.

Pope Francis waves to faithful at the end of the weekly general audience in the Paul VI hall at the Vatican, Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)
Pope Francis waves to faithful at the end of the weekly general audience in the Paul VI hall at the Vatican, Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)

on same sex union “Homosexuals have a right to be a part of the family. They are children of God and have a right to a family,” he said

What we have to create is a civil union law. That way they are legally covered. he said

The Pope noted he has stood up for civil unions before, but his remarks in the documentary go beyond what he has said previously and sharply diverge from the view of his predecessors.

members of the LGBTQ community global and rights groups have hailed the comments as a major step, even though but they have concerns about the context of the quotes which was delivered in a movie comments .

In 2013, after he became Pope, he made big headlines when asked about reports of gays in the clergy, the Pope answered

If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?

As Archbishop of Buenos Aires Jorge Bergoglio opposed to same-sex marriage legislation but has been consistent with his opinion that some level of legal protection for same-sex couples.

In 2003, the Vatican’s office on doctrine under the leadership of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who later became Pope Benedict XVI drew a line between respect for homosexuals and a legal recognition of same sex marraige. He taught that 

respect for homosexual persons cannot lead in any way to approval of homosexual behavior or to legal recognition of homosexual unions.

Placing them on the same level as marriage, it added, would mean approval of , deviant behavior.

Advocacy groups representing LGBTQ people welcomed Francis’ new remarks.

DignityUSA, an organization representing LGBTQ Catholics, said it is “cautiously optimistic” but that the group wants to see the remarks in context and hear the Vatican’s response.

“If this statement is allowed to stand, this could be a global game changer for gay and lesbian people, for same sex couples, for LGBTQ people broadly.

I think we’re just going to have to see where it lands,” Marianne Duddy-Burke, DignityUSA’s executive director, told NPR.

“I’m very conscious of the tremendous impact that this could have, particularly for queer people in countries where there are no legal protections at this point, where they are very much subject to violence and to social marginalization,” Duddy-Burke said.

in a tweet following the news, Alphonso David, president of the Human Rights Campaign, said,

“This is a significant step forward for inclusion and acceptance in the Catholic Church, letting LGBTQ Catholics know that being a person of faith and being LGBTQ are not mutually exclusive.”

But the pope’s latest comments drew some criticism.

The remarks are a form of “pastoral outreach, ” said Bill Donohue, president of the U.S.-based Catholic League, a conservative group. ” It’s not going to change doctrine. He doesn’t have the authority to do that anyhow.”

He continued, “I think it’s going to be greeted with a great deal of mass confusion on the part of the laity. … I think the lack of clarity is the most disturbing thing about this.”


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