Pope Benedict Hub




The Fight For Marriage Equality In Italy: VIDEO

Pope francis receptive to civil partnerships

The close proximity of Vatican City to the Italian parliament may help to explain why Italy is the only country in Western Europe that provides no legal recognition of same-sex couples, reports Buzzfeed.

However, that situation may be about to change.

Earlier this year, Pope Francis suggested that a time might come when the church would drop its opposition to some form of civil partnership.

In the interview with Corriere della Sera, the pope said that although “marriage is between a man and a woman...we have to look at the different cases and evaluate them in their variety.” 6a00d8341c730253ef019aff7cea6f970b-300wi

Speaking to Buzzfeed last week, Monsignor Marcel Sánchez Sorondo said while the Catholic Church is against marriage equality, legislation that differentiates between marriage and civil partnerships might be acceptable.

According to a 2013 Pew survey, 74% of Italians said they believed “homosexuality is a way of life that should be accepted by society.” A 2013 Ipsos poll found that 48% of Italians supported full same-sex marriage rights while 31% opposed marriage rights but supported an alternative form of partnership recognition.

Naples recently became the first large city in Italy to start recognizing overseas same-sex marriages after a lower court ordered officials in Grosseto to record an overseas marriage, reports Buzzfeed. However, some LGBT activists worry that the ruling may be no more than symbolic because a Supreme Court order issued last month ordered the annulment of a same-sex marriage. The Constitutional Court later ruled the forced annulment violated the rights of the couple in question. The court also ruled that the marriage remains invalid until the Italian government passes a law recognizing same-sex unions.

However, according to Dina Nerozzi, a psychologist and lay adviser to the Pontifical Council for the Family, marriage equality cannot happen:

“People will fight for that. I mean fight — [we] will take weapons out.”

Watch a report on Corriere della Sera's interview with Pope Francis, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Cardinal Dolan on 'Meet the Press': Pope is Not for Civil Unions, and It Would Make Me Uncomfortable — VIDEO

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On today's Meet the Press, David Gregory asked NYC Cardinal Timothy Dolan about the Pope's statements this week that seemed to suggest the Catholic Church might support civil unions.

Said Dolan:

“He didn't come right out and say he was for them. Once again in an extraordinarily open, sincere, nuanced way, he said 'I know that some people in some states have chosen this. We  need to think about that and look in look into it and see the reasons that have driven them.' It wasn't as if he came right out and approved them. But in a sensitivity that has won the heart of the world, he said, 'Rather than quickly condemn them, let's see. Let's just ask the questions as to why that has appealed to certain people."

Gregory then asked Dolan if that would make him personally uncomfortable.

Said Dolan:

"The civil unions? It would. It would in a way, David, because I don't think, um, marriage between one man and one woman forever, leading to life and love. That's not something that is just a sacramental religious concern. You bet it is that. And that's how God is elevated into making a sacrament. But it's also the building block of society and culture. So it belongs to culture. And if we water down that sacred meaning of marriage in any way I worry that not only the church would suffer, I worry that culture and society would."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Popes Collaborate on New Text That Reiterates Catholic Church's Opposition to Gay Marriage

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Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis have collaborated on a new Encyclical, a papal circular letters addressed to Roman Catholic clergy intended to summarise a pontiff's thoughts on a particular facet of Church life.

The piece of writing released yesterday was begun by Benedict and completed by Francis and reiterates the Catholic church's position rejecting same-sex marriage, the AAP reports:

Francis paid tribute to pope emeritus Benedict XVI in the encyclical, saying that the ex-pontiff had "almost completed" the text before stepping down in a historic resignation this year and that he himself had merely added "further contributions."

The 82-page text stresses that there is no contradiction between the Catholic faith and the modern world and calls for more dialogue with scientists, other religions and non-believers.

It also restates the Catholic Church's position on marriage saying it should be a "stable union of man and woman."
"This union is born of their love, as a sign and presence of God's own love, and of the acknowledgment and acceptance of the goodness of sexual differentiation," reads the text.

While some passages in the encyclical have a more academic and ponderous feel characteristic of Benedict XVI, others contain the simpler expressions and brighter outlook of his successor.


Pope Francis Says 'Gay Lobby' Exists Within Vatican

Pope Francis has admitted the existence of a "gay lobby" within the Vatican, AFP reports:

FrancisBack in February Italian media claimed that a secret report by cardinals investigating the leaks included allegations of corruption and blackmail attempts against gay Vatican clergymen, and on the other hand, favouritism based on gay relationships.

"In the Curia, there are truly some saints, but there is also a current of corruption," the pope is quoted as having said during an audience last week with CLAR (the Latin American and Caribbean Confederation of Religious Men and Women).

"There is talk of a 'gay lobby' and it's true, it exists. We have to see what can be done," the 76-year-old pontiff is quoted as saying on the Reflection and Liberation website, which was flagged up by religious news agencies on Tuesday.

Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi told AFP: "It was a private meeting, I have no comment to make."

Previously...
Report: 'Gay Lobby' Within Vatican Influenced Pope's Resignation [tlrd]


Two Popes Come Together: VIDEO

Popes

Pope Benedict met his successor Pope Francis at the papal retreat at Castel Gandolfo on Saturday afternoon, USA Today reports:

The two popes embraced on the helipad when Francis' helicopter arrived, Vatican spokesman Rev. Federico Lombardi said on Vatican Radio. The two were dressed in white, with Pope Francis wearing a cape and sash to distinguish himself from Benedict, who wore a simple white cassock.

When the duo went to the chapel, Lombardi said Benedict offered Francis the traditional kneeler used by the pope, but Francis wanted the pair to kneel together on the same pew, saying, "We are brothers."

Here's a pool video of their meeting.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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GLAAD President Joins CNN to Discuss Expectations the Pope Might Inspire Shift on Gay Issues: VIDEO

Glaadpope

CNN's Carol Costello welcomed Catholics United Executive Director James Salt and GLAAD President Herndon Graddick Thursday morning to talk about Pope Francis and whether or not a shift is expected on gay issues.

Graddick reacted to his statement yesterday that he hoped that a new Pope might signal a shift in attitudes:

"For decades the Catholic hierarchy has been in need of desperate reform. In his life, Jesus condemned gays zero times. In Pope Benedict's short time in the papacy, he made a priority of condemning gay people routinely. This, in spite of the fact, that the Catholic hierarchy had been in collusion to cover up the widespread abuse of children within its care. We hope this Pope will trade in his red shoes for a pair of sandals and spend a lot less time condemning and a lot more time foot-washing."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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