Monday, October 13, 2014

RNS: Vatican stuns Catholic world with greater openness toward gays and lesbians

VATICAN CITY (RNS) The world’s Catholic bishops on Monday (Oct. 13) signaled a move toward greater tolerance of gays and lesbians, an about-face so unexpected that leaders of the church’s right wing called it a “betrayal.”

Noting that gays and lesbians have “gifts and qualities” to offer the church, the mid-point assessment reflected the impact that Pope Francis seems to be having on the two-week Synod on the Family as he pushes for a more open, less doctrinaire approach.

“Are we capable of welcoming these people, guaranteeing them a fraternal space in our communities?” said the communique from the nearly 200 bishops and lay delegates. “Often they wish to encounter a church that offers them a welcoming home.
“Are our communities capable of providing that, accepting and valuing their sexual orientation, without compromising Catholic doctrine on the family and matrimony?”

While they reaffirmed their opposition to gay marriage and same-sex unions, the bishops’ ground-breaking document nonetheless said homosexuality called for “serious reflection” and described it as an “important educative challenge” for the church.

Read the rest at Religion News Service

I am not at all sure what this means in practice. I am wondering how or if National Organization for Marriage will respond.

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