Pope Francis may have won millions of hearts, including many from the LGBT community, but his positions on church doctrine have not changed. In the almost ten months since Cardinal Bergoglio became Pope Francis I, he has reached out to many communities and garnered support worldwide.
But Pope Francis is still the Pope, and church doctrine is still church doctrine.
So it should come as a surprise to no one that, according to Charles J. Scicluna, the Auxiliary Bishop of Malta, Pope Francis is vehemently against same-sex marriage, and sees it as “regression” for humankind.
Malta, a small European country of less than a half-million people, is currently debating a civil unions bill which includes the right of same-sex couples to adopt. Malta is a predominantly Roman Catholic country.
Scicluna reportedly says that in a discussion last month with the 77-year old pontiff, Francis repeated his comments from 2010: same-sex marriage is an “anthropological regression” — a step back for humankind.
“In 2010, then-Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio called same-sex marriage an ‘anti-value and an anthropological regression,’” Zenit, a news agency that covers the Vatican, reports. “In a conversation with Rabbi Abraham Skorka published in the book “On Heaven and Earth”, he said same-sex marriage is a weakening of the institution of marriage, an institution that has existed for thousands of years and is “forged according to nature and anthropology.”
Last week, the Times of Malta reported that the Pope was “shocked” by the Civil Unions Bill, “which will allow gay couples to adopt children, Auxiliary Bishop Charles Scicluna has told The Sunday Times of Malta.”
Defending his decision to use his Christmas homily to reiterate that a family had to be built around a man and a woman, Mgr Scicluna said he had aired these concerns with Pope Francis when he met him on December 12.
“We discussed many aspects…and when I raised the issue that’s worrying me as a bishop [the right for gay couples to adopt] he encouraged me to speak out,” Bishop Scicluna said.
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