Pope Francis: Pope Francis apologizes for using homophobic slur in closed-do...

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Published Time: 28.05.2024 - 17:13:32 Modified Time: 28.05.2024 - 17:13:32

The Catholic Church has historically banned gay men from becoming priests. Pope Francis

Pope Francis has apologized for causing offence after numerous reports claimed the religious leader used a homophobic slur during a closed-door meeting whether gay men should be permitted into seminaries.

The Catholic Church has historically banned gay men from becoming priests.

Amid the discussion gay men in Catholic seminaries, Italian media outlets claimed the Pope used an offensive slur. According to reports, the Pope said in Italian that gay men should not be permitted because there is already “frociaggine” (in English, translated to “f—tness,” using a derogatory term for a gay man) in some seminaries.

The Pope’s use of a slur was reported by the Italian outlets Dagospia, La Repubblica and Corriere della Sera, which quoted several unnamed bishops reportedly present during the meeting. One bishop told several of the papers he believed the Pope used the slur as a “joke,” while another said the pontiff may not have been aware the term is offensive, given Italian is not the Argentine Pope’s first language.

“Pope Francis is aware of the recent articles regarding a closed-door conversation with the bishops of the CEI (Italian Bishops’ Conference),” Vatican spokesperson Matteo Bruni said in the statement released Tuesday. “As he has stated on many occasions, ‘There is room for everyone in the Church, for everyone! No one is useless; no one is superfluous; there is room for everyone. Just as we are, everyone.'”

The Pope’s use of a homophobic slur is in contrast to his public urging that the church should welcome LGBTQ2 communities in an effort to become more inclusive.

Last year, the Pope made the unprecedented decision to allow priests to bless same-sex couples, so long as the blessing is not confused with the ritual sacrament of marriage. The decision, as well as other more tolerant messages from the Pope to LGBTQ2 , has been controversial in the Catholic community, with some disparaging the Vatican’s position. Still, the Vatican has maintained that its teachings against same-sex marriage remain the same and that homosexual acts are sinful.

This is not the first time the Pope has said gay men should not join the clergy or study in seminaries. During a 2018 interview, the pontiff said homosexuality is a “very serious issue” and that the “fashionable” public perception toward gay should not sway the Catholic Church.

“In consecrated and priestly life, there’s no room for that kind of affection. Therefore, the church recommends that with that kind of ingrained tendency should not be accepted into the ministry or consecrated life,” the Pope said in 2018. “The ministry or the consecrated life is not his place.”