Sat 1st Nov 2014 | Last updated: Fri 31st Oct 2014 at 16:19pm

Facebook Logo Twitter Logo RSS Logo

Latest News

‘If a gay person seeks God, who am I to judge him?’ says Pope Francis

By on Monday, 29 July 2013

Pope Francis listens to a question from a journalist on his flight heading back to Rome from Rio on Monday (CNS)

Pope Francis listens to a question from a journalist on his flight heading back to Rome from Rio on Monday (CNS)

Pope Francis said that he would not judge gay people who are earnestly seeking God in a candid press conference on the flight home from Rio today.

Speaking to members of the press during a flight back to Rome from Rio de Janeiro after World Youth Day celebrations, Pope Francis responded to questions about the Vatican’s alleged gay lobby, by saying: “If a person is gay and seeks God and has good will, who am I to judge him?”

According to reports, the Pope surprised journalists by taking questions from them for an hour and 20 minutes.

He answered without notes and did not refuse to answer any of the questions. On the journey out to Rio de Janeiro he had told reporters that he would not be doing any interviews.

During the press conference, Pope Francis reaffirmed that the Church was unable to ordain women priests, but emphasised women’s importance to the Faith.

“A Church without women would be like the apostolic college without Mary. The Madonna is more important that the Apostles, and the Church herself is feminine, the spouse of Christ and a mother,” he said.

“We cannot limit the role of women in the Church to altar girls or the president of a charity, there must be more.”

Pope Francis told journalists that he is currently unsure of what the future holds for the Vatican bank, saying it could become an “ethical bank” or, possibly, be closed down.

“I don’t know yet how to fix the Institute for the Works of Religion [Vatican bank]. Some say it should be a sort of ethical bank, others that it should be an assistance fund, others want to close it altogether,” he said

“I’ve heard all these voices, but I don’t know. What’s important is transparency and honesty. It must be like this.”

He added that a preliminary investigation had been conducted looking into alleged “immoral conduct” against prelate for the Vatican bank, Mgr Battista Ricca, which “found nothing”.

Speaking about reform of the Roman Curia, Pope Francis said everything he has done so far flows from the concerns and suggestions raised by the College of Cardinals during the meetings they held before the conclave that elected Pope Francis in March.

The cardinals, he said, wanted the Vatican central offices be more efficient and more clearly at the service of the Church. “There are saints who work in the Curia, cardinals, bishops, priests, sisters, laity; I’ve met them,” he said.

Other topics Pope Francis discussed in the press conference included Benedict XVI and security arrangements in Rio. A full transcript of the press conference is expected to appear later today.

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    Most definitely.. as to purpose, probably for the same reasons it is prevalent in so many other species as well.

    1,500 animal species practice homosexuality. Homosexuality is quite common in the animal kingdom, especially among herding animals. Many animals solve conflicts by practicing same gender sex. The pairing of same sex couples had previously been observed in more than 1,000 species including penguins, dolphins and primates.

    However, in the latest study it was found that the phenomenon is not only widespread but part of a necessary biological adaptation for the survival of the species.

    On the Hawaiian island of Oahu, almost a third of the Laysan albatross population is raised by pairs of two females because of the shortage of males. Through these ‘lesbian’ unions, Laysan albatross are flourishing. Their existence had been dwindling before the adaptation was noticed.

    Other species form same-sex bonds for other reasons, they found. Dolphins have been known engage in same-sex interactions to facilitate group bonding while male-male pairings in locusts killed off the weaker males.

    A pair of “gay” penguins recently hatched an egg at a German zoo after being given the egg that had been rejected by its biological parents by keepers.

    Writing in Trends in Ecology & Evolution, Dr Nathan Bailey, an evolutionary biologist at California University, said previous studies have failed to consider the evolutionary consequences of homosexuality.

    Homosexual behaviour was often a product of natural selection to further the survival of the species.

    It’s clear same-sex sexual behaviour extends far beyond the well-known examples that dominate both the scientific and popular literature – for example, bonobos, dolphins, penguins
    and fruit flies.

    Same-sex behaviours – courtship, mounting or parenting – are traits that have been shaped by natural selection, a basic mechanism of evolution that occurs over successive generations.

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    I realize it’s not the same as you are taught by Catholic standards, but for us it is either a civil, spiritual, or usually both, joining between two adults who love each other, who want to spend the rest of their lives together… just the same as most heterosexual marriages are.

  • Ex Umbris Oxford

    I didn’t. I left the comment as it was and on my screen at least it still has the bit about women being silent in Church in there… It’s only now you’ve pointed it out that I’ve found where the Edit button is, otherwise I’d have corrected the grammar in some earlier posts.

    The Old Testament is entirely compiled of what had been oral traditions reified into compendiums in each book. You can see in so much of it that the texts are constructed in a way that makes it easy to memorise. The New Testament was written down for the first time some years and in some books decades after the events they describe, they are the result of a lively oral tradition borne out of an illiterate populace. We cannot cease purifying the work of the Church Fathers and Doctors of the Church because we haven’t reached perfection yet. It is certainly up to us to do so. I haven’t seen the holy spirit pick up a highlighter recently, so it’s up to us to open ourselves to Him and put our intellect at his disposal. St Theresa of Avilla hit the nail on the head with “Christ has no body but yours, no hand, no feet on earth but yours”. His work needs to be carried out by us.

    We do not believe in a Quran which was dictated to a prophet by God. We believe that God inspired weak and feable men to transmit the Truth. The protestants believe that anyone is capable of understanding the Bible, whereas the Catholic Church recognises its massive complexity and therefore the need for proper scholarship and careful interpretation by the Magesterium. Everyone who is able has the responsibility of engaging in that dialogism because of the universal call to holiness, the universal call to enter ever more deeply into the mystery of God.

  • Sammy Nibo

    LEVITICUS
    18: 22 ” THOU SHALT NOT LIE WITH MANKIND, AS WITH A WOMANKIND; IT IS
    ABOMINATION” A MAN SHALL NOT HAVE SEX WITH ANOTHER MAN, FOR GOD ABHORS
    OR HATES THIS BEHAVIOR! God sent angels to destroy two cities; Sodom and Gomorrah with the inhabitants for homosexuality, except LOT. Who says you (POPE) would be judging them? What do you say to somebody who engages in incest but seeking God. Do You think that we under grace so you can afford to engage in a sin as grave as homosexuality?
    Roman 1:16

  • C.M.R.

    I don’t normally comment on any dialogue or chat, but after reading all of the opinions on Pope Francis’s comment, “If a gay person seeks God, who am I to judge him?”, I would say the same thing.
    We are all sinners, but despite our sinfulness, God created us in love and desires us to love Him. That is why He took on our sinful nature and bore the weight of the cross. He who knew no sin, was made sin for us, to save us and restore us to God’s friendship.
    No one can possibly know what another person’s life is like or the experiences he or she has been through. Only God knows the depths of each person’s heart and soul and only God can judge that person. Who among us knows the mind or heart of God and how can we say who God will condemn or who God will save? Brothers and sisters, let us just love and pray for each other and be as Christ to one another.
    C.M.R.

  • Martlet

    I have read all that before, but an animal’s instinct is nothing more than an itch. I had a cat that placed herself well and truly in front of the plumber, when she was in season and he came to do some work in my kitchen. She also tried the dog, a table leg and me. Does this mean that we should all satisfy ourselves with whatever is available, because we observe such behaviour in animals? And the same dog that will mount another male will also mount a person’s leg. This is a domination impulse, not a sexual one, so are we recommending that rather than sit around talking, members of the United Nations should mount each other? Come on aaglaas, you are much better than a fruit-fly – or a penguin. What is YOUR purpose? Just to scratch an itch?

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    Don’t just cherry pick verses from the Bible Sammy unless you’re going to follow all of them: LEVITICUS 11:9-12 “‘These shall you eat of all that are in the waters: whatsoever has fins and scales in the waters, in the seas, and in the rivers, them shall you eat. And all that have not fins and scales in the seas and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters and of any living thing which is in the waters, THEY SHALL BE AN ABOMINATION TO YOU!” (God HATES lobster, clams, shrimp, and oysters!!!!) (GOD HATES THE BEHAVIOR OF EATING THEM! IF YOU EAT THEM YOU ARE AN ABOMINATION!!) “They shall be even an ABOMINATION unto you: ye shall not eat of their flesh, but YOU SHALL HOLD THEM AS ABOMINATIONS!” Anything in the water that does not have fins or scales is AN ABOMINATION to you!”

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    I’m sorry Martlet, but this behavior is much more than merely an itch… these are natural and evolutionary behaviors that have been proven to benefit the entire species. As to why God created homosexuals such as myself.. who knows? Population control most likely. God knows the planet is already severely overpopulated with not enough clean water and food for everyone.

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    Very beautifully said, C.M.R.!!!

  • Sammy Nibo

    Who is fussing about judgement. hasn’t the bible said in 2 Timothy 3:16 that the bible is for reproof and and correction. just wondering whether the pope would drop the judgement bit and use the correcting and reproofing bit. no body expected the pope to judge anyway who made him a judge?

  • AlanP

    I am not homosexual, but I take great exception to this phrase “intrinsically disordered”. We are all, I suppose, “disordered” in one way or another, whether it be some physical or mental abnormality, so why pick on one sector of society to apply this phrase to? As far as sexual orientation is concerned, there are more than just two orientations. Some people are attracted to both sexes, some are orientated in the way Jimmy Savile was. Surely he was much more “disordered” than any monogamous homosexual?

  • Tim

    For goodness’ sake don’t mention wearing clothing made of mixed fibres. Then we’ll all be abominations (well, more than we probably are anyway!!)

  • togold

    Well said Tim. The Pharisees force so many people out

  • Martlet

    But is it the same as most heterosexual marriages? That doesn’t square with what I read on gay sites, or the experience of my gay friends – and yes, I do have them. Define fidelity. Come on, hand on heart. Describe adultery. Again, honestly. Answer those gays and lesbians who, even before the ink is dry on legislation, state in public that they see marriage as being three-somes, four-somes or whatever permutation you can come up with. And you can be sure that nothing I am saying here is something I have not heard from gays!

  • Quo Primum

    Along with Holy Eucharist (what is holy communion?!), Saint Ambrose taught that a devout Our Father can remove venial sin, as well as the Sign of the Cross w/ holy water (accompanied with perfect or imperfect contrition and a firm resolution of will {not repentance}). It also needs to be stated that forgiveness from God of venial sins does not include the remission of temporal punishment that accompanies the sin.

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    Ha!! So true Tim!! (just think how many of those abominational polyester and cotton shirts are gonna send all those poor people who wore them to hell) ;-)~

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    Well said!!

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    I don’t doubt that there are some who desire that, but for me it would have to be fidelity all the way if I married another man. I know about 35 married same-sex couples, and I’d say 32 of them are totally monogamous with each other. There are many heterosexual marriages that are ‘open’ as well, so it’s not something specific to gay people. That said, once again… it would have to be a monogamous marriage for me personally and most gay marriages are just the same as heterosexual ones.

  • Sammy Nibo

    I guess the person who said just do good to go to heaven is deceiving himself. Do you know about work without faith? do you think faith in Satan? Think seriously about these things for it is not difficult for Satan to imitate angels of light.

    “preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction. 3For
    the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but
    wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves
    teachers in accordance to their own desires, 4and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths.

    I Think for your own desires you would want the senile pope to be gaffing to please you>

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    I don’t think the Pope is senile… and I definitely have nothing to do with Satan..

  • Martlet

    But you see, I don’t believe that God created homosexuals. If it is genetic at all, and the jury is still out, then it is no more God’s will than that it is His will that a particular person should go bald. And your argument about population control doesn’t hold water. Firstly, every gay activist will say that homosexuality is as old as mankind itself. Well clearly, when the imperative was to multiply as fast as possible, population control could not have been the purpose. Then it still cannot be the purpose since there is still plenty of food and water for everyone. Unfortunately, it tends to be concentrated in a few hands and wasted. And here in the West, we are barely reproducing enough to sustain our population. I would suggest that God knows that and would not waste valuable reproductive material by making people gay.

    Like it or lump it, but our sexual urges are a biological imperative towards reproduction. We were not created for the pleasure. The pleasure is purely so we will procreate. I mean let’s face it. Remove the pleasure and none of us would bother.

    This does not mean that I deem you to have no purpose. You are a beautiful child of the Most High God and if you are baptised, you are a prophet, a priest and a king, no less than any of us and, after the dialogue we’ve had here, I wish I knew you personally. But the fact remains that you are called to the same degree of purity as every last one of us. If you came for this forum looking for respect, you most definitely have mine, but if you came looking to change minds, I’m sorry but it isn’t going to happen.

  • Martlet

    How long have these gay men been together? You see, I don’t doubt that gays CAN form sexually monogamous relationships, but it certainly is not the norm. And of course I knew you would say that heterosexual couples sometimes have “open” marriages, but which do you think is more likely to happen … that unhappy gays will follow heteros in seeking to remain monogamous, or that unhappy heteros will further disassemble marriage as they see their gay friends splitting up? A clue from someone who has been on the planet a lot longer than you have: People do tend to take the easy way out.

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    Thank you for your words of love, and I realize you don’t believe that God created homosexuals… but not being one yourself, you really don’t know, other than what someone who is not gay has told you.

    That said, we will just have to agree to disagree that God created me homosexual, as I know he did. I don’t expect to change minds, but the minds of 54% of American Catholics already have changed on this issue, and agree with what I am telling you, so it is not a completely useless effort to share the truth on here about gay people such as myself.

    I wish you God’s blessings even if we have to disagree, and thank you for your kind words Martlet… Sincerely, Aaron Lindahl in Seattle.

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    One of the couples I know have been together for 45 years, and the rest range from 30 years to 5 years together. Of course, since the majority of my fellow citizens here in Washington state, including the majority of Catholics, voted last year to approve same-sex marriage, many more of my friends will be getting married this year.

  • Quo Primum

    Julian—Dont you mean Arian Heresy???? I dont recall an Arian Apostasy.

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    For some reason my statement hasn’t shown up yet… One couple I know has been together for 45 years, and the rest range from 35 to 5 years together. Of course, since the majority of my fellow citizens, including the majority of Catholics here, voted last year to approve marriage equality for gays, many more of my friends will be getting married this year. And… I’m not exactly a spring-chicken.. I’m 43 years old.

  • Quo Primum

    ” As for Protestants, they share in the same baptism as Catholics (which is why we do not “re-baptise” Protestants when they come into the Catholic Church) and therefore are not apostates. “- One, the True Church conditionally Baptizes. Second, ALL protestants are heretics.

  • Quo Primum

    Julian, there are Catholic Popes before the conciliar and post conciliar ones. (just a tip)

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    How odd… once again this statement has disappeared… Do the moderators not want you or anyone to know that many gay couples are together monogamously for decades?? If so, how childish and petty… I’ll keep re-posting this daily if they do so since there is noting to ‘moderate’ on this statement… Once again: . One couple I know has been together for 45 years, and the rest range from 35 to 5 years together. Of course, since the majority of my fellow citizens, including the majority of Catholics here, voted last year to approve marriage equality for gays, many more of my friends will be getting married this year. And… I’m not exactly a spring-chicken.. I’m 43 years old.

  • http://aaglaas.blogspot.com/ aaglaas

    Do the moderators not want you or anyone to know that many gay couples are together monogamously for decades?? If so, how childish and petty… In response to a question to me about how long have the gay couples I know who have gotten married have been together, I’ll keep re-posting this daily if they do so since there is noting to ‘moderate’ on this statement… Once again: . One couple I know has been together for 45 years, and the rest range from 35 to 5 years together. Of course, since the majority of my fellow citizens, including the majority of Catholics here, voted last year to approve marriage equality for gays, many more of my friends will be getting married this year. And… I’m not exactly a spring-chicken.. I’m 43 years old.

  • bluesuede

    MercatorNet.com, Has a very good article by Sheila Reports
    “Pope Francis surprised media with candid presser”. With links to Italian transcripts and Rome Reports video.

  • bluesuede

    Why do you read them? Read what Pope Francis says instead. Better still, read what Jesus Christ said.

  • bluesuede

    Absolutely!

  • Pingback: Opinion: We need more from Vatican on LGBT issues | multinationaltelecommunications.com