(Local Paper) Pope Francis’ comments stir debate over Church's Standards for Sexual Morality

“His comments only further reflect his desire to reach out to all Catholics and individuals who are marginalized,” said [Marcus] Cox, a history professor and associate dean at The Citadel. “His unassuming leadership style and his message of love and tolerance gives him the ability to connect with individuals seeking a place in the Catholic church.”

Francis might have struck a more conciliatory tone for some, but he surely did not suggest that noncelibate gays and lesbians should escape the church’s judgment, said Warren Redman-Gress, executive director of Alliance for Full Acceptance, a Charleston-based gay-rights advocacy group.

“Pope Francis’ recent ”˜Who am I to judge?’ remark regarding gay clergy has been called an ”˜outstretched hand’ and a shift toward greater understanding,” wrote Redman-Gress in an email. “I don’t believe it is either. When a person, even a pope, uses the ”˜who am I to judge?’ phrase, he is saying, ”˜I won’t judge because I am a sinner as well; I am going to leave the judgment of that person’s sexual orientation to God.’ ”

But this implies that a sexually active gay person nevertheless is subject to God’s reckoning (and, by extention, the church’s), Redman-Gress wrote.

Read it all.


Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, * South Carolina, Anthropology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Other Churches, Pastoral Theology, Pope Francis, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic, Theology

4 comments on “(Local Paper) Pope Francis’ comments stir debate over Church's Standards for Sexual Morality

  1. Pb says:

    Neither the Church nor scripture teach that innate sexual orientation is a sin. But what we are really talking about is same-sex sex and that is a different matter.

  2. Charles52 says:

    A translation of the entire interview is available. I don’t have a link, but zenit should have it.

  3. New Reformation Advocate says:

    Thanks, Charles52. Yes, it’s well worth the time to read through the whole 80 minute interview. Anyone who does will quickly see that a tremendous amount of nonsense has been said and written over what people mistakenly thought the pope was saying, or implying. As so often happens, people tend to hear what they WANT to hear, or hope to hear, or desperately need to hear…

    There were a lot more important and illuminating things disclosed in the papal press conference than his brief remark about not presuming to judge gay priests, and personally, I thought the most intriguing was his clarification about why Pope Francis has chosen not to live in the papal apartment. It turns out to have less to do with embracing a lifestyle of simplicity than his psychological need not to live in splendid isolation, but rather in community. That whole section of the interview, I thought, told us far more about what kind of man and leader he is.

    David Handy+