As Pope Francis visits America this week, many political fringe groups will be trying to claim his imprimatur for their pet causes. His Papal encyclicals will be fodder; global warming alarmists will point to Laudato Si’*, and the socialists will point to the Evangelii Gaudium**. Gay activists will point to his off the cuff, out of context remark on “who am I to judge”. But none of these political extremists will point to the actual teachings of the church or other public statements of the Holy Father. More importantly, most of the political activists who falsely claim Papal support generally don’t qualify for it on key point: they are not faithful and devoted to God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.
President Obama has already sought to add his own political spin to the Pope’s visit by inviting transgendered activists, allegedly pro-abortion nuns (the group was reprimanded by the Vatican), a gay former Episcopal Bishop and gay rights activists from GLAAD. The liberal Washington Post has properly criticized Obama for hypocrisy for pushing his agenda on the Pope, but not ever putting human rights activists in meetings with Dictators like Chinese President XI Jinping. The phenomenon of latching on to the annunciations of Catholic leaders that comport with a liberal narrative is not new. But it is more common these days with Pope Francis who provides frequent fodder for talking heads through his access and transparency. We will likely see many faulty headlines produced this week from the Pope’s visit supporting the gay agenda. It is certain however, there will be very little accurate reporting on the Pope’s true position.
The Pope has outlined his true positions on traditional marriage, so-called “Gay marriage” and homosexuality in many public statements. Further, the Pope represents the Magisterium (teaching authority) of the Church and defends its Catechism (teachings). The Catholic Church opposes so-called “gay marriage” and opposes all sexual acts that occur outside the sacrament of marriage which can only be between one man and one woman. But there will be no commentary on that by the media machine to be sure. But here is what the Pope has said about gay issues.
Pope Calls Gay Marriage “Total Rejection of God’s Law”, satanic – In February of 2015, the Pope supported a Slovakian referendum against so-called same-sex “marriage”. He has a history of supporting traditional marriage and opposing false marriage. When Pope Francis was the archbishop of Buenos Aires, his country was faced with a government effort to legalize so-called “same-sex marriage”. He wrote a letter to Catholics in Argentina stating as follows: “Let us not be naive: This is not simply a political struggle, but it is an attempt to destroy God’s plan.” And “It is not just a bill (a mere instrument) but a ‘move’ of the father of lies who seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God.” Pope Francis, then Cardinal Bergoglio, referred to the “Father of Lies” as the source of sodomite marriage. That would be Satan.
Pope Defines Sexual Deviancy as unhealthy – In his recent Encyclical “Laudato Si’” he chastised those who ignore God’s creation of a Man and a Woman and stated “It is not a healthy attitude which would seek ‘to cancel out sexual difference because it no longer knows how to confront it’” (§155). He pointed out that that we should value “one’s own body in its femininity or masculinity is necessary if I am going to be able to recognize myself in an encounter with someone who is different. In this way we can joyfully accept the specific gifts of another man or woman, the work of God the Creator, and find mutual enrichment”.
Pope says Accept God’s plan for Sexuality – According to The Catholic News Agency, in Laudato Si,
He cautioned against seeking to exercise “absolute power” over our bodies as if they were something that we own, saying that “man too has a nature that he must respect and that he cannot manipulate at will.”
In other words, the Pope is preaching that persons should not put themselves above God’s law by claiming they can change their sex, or engage in illicit sex that is extramarital or homosexual.
Pope Supports the Catechism which Calls for Homosexual Chastity – The Pope is the head of the Catholic Church, the successor to St. Peter’s Throne. He cannot, based on an interview in a plane, change the teachings of the Church. The teachings of the Catholic Church are crystal clear. “Homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered” and “Homosexuals are called to chastity” (***Catechism referenced below). When he was asked about homosexuals by a liberal media with a “gotcha” question, he responded as a Pope should:
“When I meet a gay person, I have to distinguish between their being gay and being part of a lobby. If they accept the Lord and have goodwill, who am I to judge them? They shouldn’t be marginalized. The tendency [to homosexuality] is not the problem…they’re our brothers.
The Pope was asked how he would deal with gay priests who are part of a “gay lobby” in the Vatican but not sexually active. The Pope made two important caveats 1) he must distinguish their political agenda from the homosexuality and 2) he assumes they are accepting the Lord. He also expresses a third caveat since the questions assumed the gay priests were not sexually active. While he will not Judge, the Pope knows that God will judge based on how sincerely sinners have repented and sincerely sought to remove sin from their lives. One is left to wonder if the gay activists seeking to enter the Catholic Church are truly sincere in their quest for the lord and for salvation, or are merely masqueraders seeking to foment dissension among the faithful.
The Catholic Church on the Family and Homosexuality.
The Catholic church does indeed have a “gay lobby” – as acknowledged by the reporter questioning the Pope about it on the plane trip. They are activist Catholic laity, priests and bishops pushing for more acceptance of homosexual practices by the church. Note, the church ALREADY accepts homosexuals to the church – as sinners who must repent. The upcoming synod of the family in Rome this Month will be a pressure cooker of politics as the gay lobby seeks to alter church doctrine – the teachings of God – on homosexuality. We shall see. Of Note, the Bishop of St. Petersburg, Robert Lynch, was recently challenged from the blog to have the catechism of the Church relating to homosexuality taught in his Diocese. He has yet to agree to it.
For now, Americans need to take with a bucket of grains of salt all of the out of context headlines they are about to see on the Pope when it comes to homosexuality. There is one message from the Pope and the Catholic Church: “Welcome gays. Now stop having sex. Then you can have a better shot at salvation”.
*My promised analysis of Laudato Si’, on the environmental positions of the Pope, remains a work in progress. It is a lengthy piece requiring much study together with the Catechism. I hope to have this analysis done by October.
***“2357 Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.” They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.“
“2359 Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.