Pope urges parents to support gay children

getty: Pope Francis

Pope Francis said Wednesday that parents should offer support to gay children rather than condeming or rejecting them, Reuters reported.

The pontiff spoke to an audience about parental difficulties and how to handle them, including the issue of “parents who see different sexual orientations in their children and how to handle this, how to accompany their children, and not hide behind an attitude of condemnation.”

Francis has made similar comments before, teaching that gay people should be accepted by their families, though the Vatican’s doctrinal office ruled last year that Catholic priests still may not preside over same-sex unions.

Parishes in the United States, Germany and other countries had begun presiding over same-sex ceremonies amid calls for the Catholic Church to legitimize the marriages.

The pope has said that the church can support civil union laws, which provide gay partners with benefits when it comes to health care, inheritance and other matters.

LGBTQ issues are controversial in Catholicism, and some complain that Francis has sent mixed signals when it comes to homosexuality.

Further controversy was stoked in December after the website of the Synod of Bishops removed and then later reinstated a link to material provided by a Catholic gay rights advocacy group. The office apologized for its initial removal of the link.

Tags Catholic Church LGBTQ rights Pope Francis

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