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Pope Francis Evolves On Trans Catholics

By Charlotte Robinson, November 10, 2023

Pope Francis has declared that transgender people can be baptized & act as godparents or witnesses to a wedding in the Roman Catholic Church. Marianne Duddy-Burke, Executive Director of DignityUSA stated, “It is encouraging to see the Vatican making it clear that LGBTQ+ people are not automatically banned from our church’s sacraments. There have been too many bishops & priests who have made it difficult for members of our community to receive sacraments like baptism & even Communion, which are central to our lives as Catholics. We will continue our work to achieve full equality.” This advancement comes after Pope Francis recently stated “Being homosexual isn’t a crime” during an interaction with the media. Pope Francis acknowledged that Catholic bishops in some parts of the world support laws that criminalize homosexuality or discriminate against our LGBTQ community & he himself referred to the issue in terms of ‘sin’ but he attributed such attitudes to cultural backgrounds & said bishops in particular need to undergo a process of change to recognize the dignity of everyone. ‘It may be a sin, but not a crime,’ the Pope said. He even advised them to develop tenderness as “God has for each of us”. With over 67 countries or jurisdictions worldwide criminalizing consensual same-gender sexual activity & 11 can or do impose the death penalty according to The Human Dignity Trust this may help works to end such horrific outdated laws that contribute to harassment, stigmatization & violence against LGBTQ people. Last year I talked to Father James Martin & director Shannon Post about their documentary “Building a Bridge” that follows a priest on his mission to make the Catholic Church more accepting of our LGBTQ community. LISTEN  

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