Did Pope Francis Say Homosexual Behavior Is OK?

Short Answer: No

Pope Francis made some impromptu remarks for reporters while returning from World Youth Day, and now headlines across the mainstream media blare that he made some kind of stunning reversal of Catholic teaching. Earlier in the same interview, he half-jokingly said, “I think like a Jesuit.” True to the stereotype of the Society of Jesus, Pope Francis has a very logical mind, so we must pay careful attention to his words. What did Pope Francis actually say (emphasis added)?

When I meet a gay person, I have to distinguish between their being gay and being part of a lobby. If they accept the Lord and have goodwill, who am I to judge them? They shouldn’t be marginalized. The tendency [to homosexuality] is not the problem…they’re our brothers.

Pope Francis speaks to reporters aboard his plane while returning to Rome from World Youth Day. (AP Photo/Luca Zennaro, Pool)

Pope Francis speaks to reporters aboard his plane while returning to Rome from World Youth Day. (AP Photo/Luca Zennaro, Pool)

First of all, the supposedly provocative line begins with the word, “if,” and it’s a BIG IF. Most homosexuals do not accept Jesus’ teachings on chastity. Salvation comes from Jesus. Sin is a rejection of salvation. Adultery is a sin. Sex outside of marriage is adultery. The divine sacrament of marriage requires that one man and one woman vow their mutual love, fidelity, and openness to life publicly and before God. Therefore, homosexual sex is a rejection of Jesus. QED.

Some people with homosexual tendencies choose to accept the salvation of our Lord and maintain a life of chastity. This is the key to what Pope Francis is saying: people with homosexual desires who are able to exhibit this level of self-control should be welcomed as our brothers and given encouragement in their struggle. This is a very beautiful statement. However, it does not say anything about people who give in to carnal desires and live promiscuously—whether gay or straight.

Pope Francis does hint at this though. He says that the tendency to homosexuality is “not the problem,” which is to imply that there is a problem. There may not be an official “gay lobby” in the Holy See, but there is definitely a gay lobby in secular political life and it is viciously opposed to the Catholic Church. People who campaign for same-sex marriage or who objectify the human body do not have goodwill for us. We do not need to judge them because their actions speak for themselves.

It’s unclear whether the ellipsis indicates that Pope Francis spoke about any of this at all. He didn’t need to though. If you take his words at face value, he made a very powerful statement which encapsulates all of Catholic teaching on sexuality and chastity in a very simple and profound observation. He said exactly what he meant to say and nothing more. Liberal advocates of same-sex marriage—especially in the press—make a grave error by misinterpreting his words to imply otherwise.


Categories:Breaking News Culture Marriage Media Pope Francis

  • sarasota john

    You are never at fault if you are speaking the truth.

  • Albert Mendonca

    Outside of all these things – Homosexuality “is” immoral, unnatural, disgusting and remains and will remain a sin. There should not be any doubts about that. How we “treat” the homosexuals is a totally different question.

  • Lawrence

    The social media is no more dangerous today than word of mouth in the times of Christ. It doesn’t matter what he says and how he says it the media with spin the message. I would much rather have a pope unafraid to walk up the side of a hill or preach from a raft like Christ himself, than a fearful pope who chooses every word cautiously and only in pre arranges settings. Catholics around the world are falling in love with this pope. Its human nature to over think and criticize. Fight that urge and stand behind our Pope. He knows what he’s doing.

  • susan804

    While I agree to some degree, I remember how Pope Benedict trusted “… those whose job it is to make sure that these purposely misinterpreted words don’t have to be “explained” after the fact.” They didn’t do such a great job several times requiring lots of ‘splainin’ after the fact. Whether Pope or laity, words should be measured before spoken – especially in public. If in doubt, mums the word.

    • susan804

      Sorry. I should have mentioned that my comment was a reply to CT’s comment.

    • Ron

      Seems to me to be a frightful way to live. No matter how careful we may be, there will be those who interpret in a way that suits their beliefs. Better to speak up in my opinion.

  • Carrie Utz

    Wow…the libs are totally spinning this! They really don’t realize the depth of his words….if they only knew!

  • CT

    I realize what he said is correct and doesn’t match the liberal spin that is being put on his words.

    But this is why he should not speak off the cuff like he does. There is a reason why the Vatican has been leary of comments made without scrutiny before they are reviewed and presented.

    With the world of social media, secular media outlets that promote immorality and internet blogs, etc., you have to measure comments and be more careful because the wolves are ready to pounce and missrepresent what is said publicly.

    Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden are cases in point. They often missrepresent what the Church teaches. Now immoral media like MSNBC has latched onto these comments which would have been better off looked over by the Vatican press office before they were uttered. Now the words will be used like the evil one desires. His minions are already at work.

    While Pope Francis may be refreshing to some with his unwillingness to follow norms and procedures, it can be used to damage the Church’s message. He has to start being more measured in his comments and trust advice from those whose job it is to make sure that these purposely misinterpreted words don’t have to be “explained” after the fact.

    The fact that you had to write the article above is proof that this has caused a problem. If what you say has to be explained then the barn door should have been closed long before now.

    Its time for Pope Francis to realize that there are too many people looking to destroy the Church’s credibility in delivering the moral teachings that the world lacks. And today they are winning the narrative instead of the Pope’s words being properly understood. If you have to explain them….then it should not have been said in the first place.

    He said that you cannot “judge” them. I am tired of this word being misused by those who support immsorality. Judging them means that you condemn the individual to Hell for example.. But we must and without fail…tell them about their sin and that it could lead to eternal damnation. Wew obligated to try and help them in not losing their salvation. We are our brother’s keepers. Just read Ezekiel. The “blood will be required” our hand if we fail to point out another’s in. Sad but true.. ..Confusion on the teaching of immoral sexual behavior is no even more misunderstood. That is a problem.

    • FaithfulCatholic

      Well said, CT.

    • William Kysela

      The comment by CT is “right on”!
      I am sick of hearing all the supposed justifications of evil that are flying around the world – the sad thing is that false teaching always spreads the evil.
      We are fast reaching the point where just about anything is OK!!



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