September 28, 2015 at 11:51 am EDT | by Michael K. Lavers
Pope Francis: Public officials have right to ‘conscientious objection’

Pope Francis, gay news, Washington Blade

Pope Francis told reporters on Sept. 27, 2015, that the right to “conscientious objection” extends to public officials. (Image courtesy of C-SPAN)

Pope Francis on Sunday said public officials have the right to opt out of their official duties if they conflict with their religious beliefs.

“It is a human right and if a government official is a human person, he has that right,” Francis told reporters during his flight back to Rome from Philadelphia. “It is a human right.”

Francis also said that “conscientious objection is a right.”

“If a person does not allow others to be a conscientious objector, he denies a right,” said Francis.

Francis during the press conference did not specifically reference Rowan County (Ky.) Clerk Kim Davis, who refuses to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples because of her religious beliefs. The pontiff spoke about the issue two days after the Family Research Council honored Davis at its annual Values Voters Summit in D.C.

“It is time that Christians in America began to stand for their faith,” said Family Research Council President Tony Perkins after Davis received her award. “Kim Davis should not be an outlier. Kim Davis should not be something that surprises America.”

Pope discusses family, marriage in the Americas

Francis on Sunday ended his trip to the U.S. and Cuba that culminated with a Mass on Philadelphia’s Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

The pontiff during his homily said “the alliance between one man and one woman…generates life.” Francis told members of Congress last week that “fundamental relationships” and “the very basis of marriage and the family” are being called into question.

Francis in his speech to the U.N. General Assembly on Sept. 25 cited “ideological colonization,” which is a phrase he used earlier this year in the Philippines in an apparent criticism of efforts in support of marriage rights for same-sex couples. The pontiff also referenced “behaviors that are not human” and “unnatural.”

Michael K. Lavers is the international news editor of the Washington Blade. Follow Michael

2 Comments
  • Of course that’s their right. And their government has the right to then fire them for not doing their goddamn job like every other working American HAS TO.

  • “pope francis” defends the FREEDOM of SELF-RIGHT, the “god of fortresses”, for he confessed that “Conscientious objection is a right that is a part of every human right. It is a right.”

    Which ‘god’ is first? …FREEDOM the ‘‘god of fortresses’ or the One Creator?

    Kim Davis said that “…It is a matter of religious liberty.”…i.e. FREEDOM

    Kim Davis confessed her first god (her ‘god of fortresses’) in the above words that she spoke.

    She believes in “Religious Liberty”…which in turn dictates that she is free, has the right, to worship ANY ‘god’…or in her case the “god of the Christian religion”.

    And “pope francis” declared in congress that he is a son of the land of the FREE

    This “Religious Liberty” is part of FREEDOM….Freedom of Self- Rights.

    A strange thing, however, about this Spirit of FREEDOM…it is the way of conflict and hate…for it dictates that each individual has the freedom to justify, to do what is right in their own eyes, for their definition of “good and evil”.

    Both the marriage license clerk and the gay couples believe in, worship, and desire the SAME FREEDOM and Equality, they both claim the right of conscientious objection for their self-justified belief….the consequence of this is conflict and hatred.

    ….in other situations this SAME desire for FREEDOM leads to abuse, destruction, and death.

    The religious desire and worship this FREEDOM, and so do the non-religious, the capitalists, the fornicators, the adulterers, the homosexuals, the pro-choice / the pro-life, the liars, the thieves…etc.

    All of mankind (the small & the great, the rich & the poor, the free (employers) & the bondmen (employees)) desire and have received the MARK of FREEDOM on their foreheads and hands, for they all worship it in their mind and heart and they all work according to its way.

    But the Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the One Creator Who Gives Existence to All that Exists, said that we are to worship ONLY the One Lord your Creator and HIM Alone to SERVE in obedience and love, love for HIM first and foremost and love for , to do GOOD according to the One True Way, to the fellow man.

    Very soon, the Lord Jesus Christ will return, as a thief in man’s eyes, to RULE the earth as the One King according to the Will of the One Creator and NOT according to man’s first love for his freedom, for his desire to serve and magnify oneself (XES).

    …and man will weep and clench his teeth in intense anger when his freedom will be no more.

    The Lord Jesus Christ said to repent and to serve Only Him, the One True Way of Life.

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