So I’m late to this, but I wanted to get a few of my thoughts down on *paper* (cyberpaper?). In an interview the Pope gave on a plane, he was asked a question regarding a so-called gay lobby at the Vatican. So first thing I wondered is, what the heck is a gay lobby? This is a term being used by the Italian media to signify a supposed set of gay priests who may have influence in the Catholic Church as an entity. Apparently it stems from something vague the Pope said in June about gay influences in the church. I’m not gonna try and get at what he said then, because I’m more interested in what he’s just said. Here is the direct quote (translated from Italian):
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 good will, who am I to judge them? They shouldn’t be marginalized. The tendency is not the problem. They are our brothers.
That is what he said and I left context in place as best I could. You would not believe how hard it was to find this quote. Most sources have shortened it to a soundbite: who am I to judge?
I am including a video of his remarks so you can see it for yourself. He mentions alot of things, and all in Italian with translation at the bottom of the screen.
As for what I think? It’s nice the Pope is making it clear he isn’t out to remove celibate gay priests. He is again symbolically reaching out in friendship and welcoming gay church membership. We can split hairs over the act itself later (which the church still considers a sin). At least it’s a start. And it’s a far cry from saying gay=pedophile or from Former Pope Benedict saying homosexuals have no business being priests. I’d also point out that sex outside marriage is also still a sin, as is divorce NOT via annulment. There are plenty of places where nobody is bothering shunning the people that commit these sins.