On March 15, the Vatican announced that priests cannot bless same-sex marriages, in what CNN has described as a “combative statement” that could “widen the chasm between the church and much of the LGBTQ community.”
The statement released by the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, described gay marriage as a “choice,” called it a “sin,” and said it “cannot be recognized as objectively ordered,” according to God’s plans. “The blessing of homosexual unions cannot be considered licit,” the statement read, adding that “it is not licit to impart a blessing on relationships, or partnerships, even stable, that involve sexual activity outside of marriage (i.e., outside the indissoluble union of a man and a woman open in itself to the transmission of life), as is the case of the unions between persons of the same sex.”
While the Vatican noted that there can be “positive elements” in gay relationships “to be valued,” the Church “cannot justify these relationships and render them legitimate objects of an ecclesial blessing.”
Pope Francis, who seemingly aligned himself with LGBTQ+ parishioners in the past, approved the note, which only added to the pain many in the gay community are feeling. “Being LGBTQ is not a choice. LGBTQ people are wonderfully made by God,” Charlotte Clymer, the communications director for Catholics for Choice, tweeted. “We are born this way and perfectly so, regardless of what the Vatican or any other religious authority might claim. Spiritual leaders should instead spend more time addressing the actions of abusive clergy.”
Just this past October, Pope Francis spoke in favor of civil unions for same-sex couples. “Homosexuals have a right to be a part of the family,” he said, per American Magazine. “They’re children of God and have a right to a family. Nobody should be thrown out or be made miserable because of it.”
Now, many are rightfully calling out the Pope and the Vatican for their harmful and “hypocritical” proclamation.
Elton John tweeted, How can the Vatican refuse to bless gay marriages because they ‘are sin,’ yet happily make a profit from investigating millions in Rocketman—a film which celebrates my finding happiness from my marriage to David?? #hypocrisy.”