Responding in writing to the questions of the American Jesuit James Martin, Pope Francis explained: “A” selective “Church is not the Holy Mother Church, but rather a sect”.
Pope Francis has returned to speak to the LGBTQI+ community. He did so by answering (in writing) three questions from the American Jesuit James Martin, who has always been at the forefront of protecting the rights of homosexuals.
To the question “What would you say to one of them who has been rejected by the Church?”, The Pontiff replied: “I would like them to recognize him not as” the rejection of the Church “, but rather as” people in the Church “”.
Pope Francis’ letter to James Martin
Responding to James Martin’s questions, the Pontiff explained: «The Church is a mother and calls together all her children. Take for example the parable of the guests at the party: “The righteous, the sinners, the rich and the poor, etc.” (Matthew 22: 1-15; Luke 14: 15-24). A “selective” Church, of “pure blood”, is not the Holy Mother Church, but rather a sect ».
But that’s not all. James Martin also asked the Holy Father for a discussion on other aspects of the relationship between faith and sexuality. “What is the most important thing that LGBT people need to know about God?” He asked him. «God is Father and does not deny any of his children. And God’s style is closeness, mercy and tenderness. Along this road you will find God».
Finally, one last question: “What would you like LGBT people to know about the Church?”. The answer is simple: “I would like them to read the book of the Acts of the Apostles. There they will find the image of the living Church “.
“Who am I to judge?”
This is not the first time that the Holy Father has spoken out on these issues. In fact, there have been many occasions, in his nine years of pontificate, in which he wanted to dedicate thoughts, messages and reflections to people belonging to the LGBTQI + community.
He made history, for example, his dialogue with journalists during the return flight of his first international trip, on the occasion of the 28th World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro, in July 2013.
“If someone is gay and seeks the Lord, who am I to judge him? We must not discriminate or marginalize these people. The Catechism also says so. The problem for the Church is not the trend. They are brothers,” he had declared.
“It is correct to speak of “homosexual people”: first there is the person, in his entirety and dignity”
But not only. On the occasion of his first book-interview entitled The name of God is Mercy, written together with the Vatican expert Andrea Tornielli and published in January 2016, the Pope said: «These people must be treated with delicacy and must not be marginalized. First of all, I like that we are talking about “homosexual people”: first there is the person, in the entirety and dignity of him. And the person is not defined only by his sexual tendency: let’s not forget that we are all creatures loved by God, recipients of his infinite love ».
And again: «I prefer that homosexual people come to confession, that they remain close to the Lord, that we can pray together. You can advise them on prayer, good will, show them the way, accompany them “.
The sentences on civil unions in the docu-film Francesco
A further opening of the Pope is also included in the Francesco docufilm, made by Russian director Evgeny Afineevsky. “Homosexual people have the right to be in a family. They are children of God and have a right to a family. Nobody should be thrown out or made unhappy about it,” he said.
“What we need to create is a law on civil unions. This way they are legally covered. I fought for this ».
Juan Carlos Cruz, a Chilean victim of father Fernando Karadima’s pedophilia, was also present at the presentation of this docu-film at the Rome Film Fest 2020. He wanted to talk about the relationship of affection he has built with Bergoglio.
In fact, Cruz explained: «When I met Pope Francis he told me how sorry he was for what had happened:“ Juan, it is God who made you gay and in any case he loves you. God loves you and the Pope loves you too ”».
The Holy Father has repeatedly addressed families with homosexual children
Finally, in January of this year, the Holy Father dedicated a further reflection to the topic during a general audience. In fact, he advised the parents of homosexual children not to “hide in a condemning attitude”.
The same thing that, during the press conference returning from the world meeting of families in Dublin, in 2018, he had anticipated: “What would I say to a father who sees that his son or daughter has that tendency? I would tell him first of all to pray: pray. Do not condemn, dialogue, understand, make room for the son or daughter. Make room for it to express itself. I will never say that silence is the remedy: ignoring the son or daughter with a homosexual tendency is a lack of paternity and motherhood. You are my son, you are my daughter, just as you are: I am your father and your mother, let’s talk. “
And he concluded: “And if you, father and mother, don’t get by, ask for help, but always in dialogue, always in dialogue. Because that son and daughter have the right to a family and this is the family: do not chase him away from the family. “
Author: Michael Zippo
Sources: VanityFair, IO Donna