October 24, 2015 at 6:23 pm EDT | by Michael K. Lavers
Catholic bishops issue long-awaited report on the family

Pope, gay news, Washington Blade

Catholic bishops who met in Rome this month to discuss the family on Oct. 24, 2015, issued their long-awaited report. (Photo by Jean-Pol Grandmont; courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

The Catholic bishops who gathered in Rome this month to discuss the family on Saturday released the final draft of their long-awaited report.

The document states that unions between same-sex couples are not “even remotely analogous” to “God’s plan for marriage and the family.” The bishops in the same paragraph also criticize the extension of marriage rights to gays and lesbians as a condition for “poor countries” to receive financial aid.

The bishops also conclude that Jesus offered “boundless love” to “every person without exception.”

“The church reaffirms that every person, regardless of their sexual orientation, must be respected in their dignity,” reads the document.

The document affirms Pope Francis’ previous statements in which he said children “have the right to grow up in a family, with a father and a mother.” The bishops also criticize what they describe as “the ideology of ‘gender’ that defines the difference and reciprocity nature of man and woman.”

“It envisages a society without gender differences and empties the anthropological foundation of the family,” reads the document. “This ideology leads educational projects and legislative guidelines that promote personal identity and emotional intimacy radically decoupled from biological diversity between male and female.”

The Washington Post reported the document, which contains 94 recommendations to Francis, did not include a proposal from Belgian Bishop Johan Bonny that would have recognized “the spiritual value of same-sex unions.”

Francis DeBernardo, executive director of New Ways Ministry, a Maryland-based group that advocates on behalf of LGBT Catholics, in a lengthy statement on Saturday criticized the bishops for including a reference against the “ideology of gender.”

DeBernardo also described the bishops’ opposition to marriage rights for same-sex couples as “disappointing.” He nevertheless welcomed the lack of attention that homosexuality and other related issues received in the final document.

“The synod’s final report focused its discussion of LGBT issues solely on families with lesbian and gay members in them,” said DeBernardo. “This is a step in the right direction, but it must not be the last step.”

Marianne Duddy-Burke, executive director of DignityUSA, a group for LGBT Catholics, in a statement criticized the report.

“The final report from the Synod is essentially an endorsement of the status quo,” she said. “It is deeply disappointing to anyone who hoped that new ground would be broken in how the Church deals with a whole range of family issues.”

The bishops released their document against the backdrop of the church’s more moderate tone towards homosexuality and other issues since Francis became pope in March 2013.

Francis during his visit to D.C. last month met with Yayo Grassi, a gay man he taught in his native Argentina in the 1960s. The Vatican also distanced itself from claims that Kim Davis, the Kentucky county clerk who refuses to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples because of her religious beliefs, had a private audience with the pontiff before he traveled to New York.

The Vatican’s critics are quick to point out the church’s positions on homosexuality, marriage rights for same-sex couples and gay priests has not changed since Francis became pope.

The Vatican earlier this month fired Msgr. Krzysztof Charamsa from his post within the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which implements church teachings on homosexuality and other issues, and the two papal universities at which he taught theology after he came out as gay on the eve of the start of the bishops’ meeting on the family. A Chilean newspaper in September published a series of emails between two cardinals that show they conspired to block a gay man’s nomination to a sex abuse commission that Francis created.

The man — Juan Carlos Cruz — is among the hundreds of people who Rev. Fernando Karadima sexually abused in his parish in the Chilean capital of Santiago over more than three decades.

Juan Carlos Cruz, gay news, Washington Blade

Rev. Fernando Karadima sexually abused Juan Carlos Cruz and hundreds of others over more than three decades at the Parroquia Sagrado Corazón de Jesús in Santiago, Chile. (Washington Blade photo by Michael K. Lavers)

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

  • Oh, well, so much for the changing stance of the Catholic church.

  • Clearly the Catholic bishops chose to ignore the advancement made possible by our Holy Spirit in marriage equality accross the United States last June. How else do you explain the c change that so quickly took hold here? I believe we were born gay, born Catholic, and this generation was born to show the way to.

    • Born Gay ? Why is it that every study on identical twins shows that is not the case?

      • who told you that – some hate group like the frc?

        in identical twins if one is gay, about 50% of the time the other is gay

        frc hate group president tony perkins


        • No one is born gay. Excerpted from OTToday: Eight major studies of identical twins in Australia, the U.S., and Scandinavia during the last two decades all arrive at the same conclusion: gays were not born that way.
          “At best genetics is a minor factor,” says Dr. Neil Whitehead, PhD. Whitehead worked for the New Zealand government as a scientific researcher for 24 years, then spent four years working for the United Nations and International Atomic Energy Agency. Most recently, he serves as a consultant to Japanese universities about the effects of radiation exposure. His PhD is in biochemistry and statistics.

          Identical twins have the same genes or DNA. They are nurtured in equal prenatal conditions. If homosexuality is caused by genetics or prenatal conditions and one twin is gay, the co-twin should also be gay.

          “Because they have identical DNA, it ought to be 100%,” Dr. Whitehead notes. But the studies reveal something else. “If an identical twin has same-sex attraction the chances the co-twin has it are only about 11% for men and 14% for women.”

          It’s environment. Now, quote your source on the 50% twins being gay.

          • the AMA, american psychological, psychiatric and psychoanalytical associations all say gay is as inborn as str8

            whats your degree in “Mein Kampf”ty_ hitler murdered not only 6 million jews (including 7 of my parents first cousins who never left eastern europe

            a million gypsies also and the 26000 blacks in germany

            Jews and gypsies are semites – technically not white

            btw toss in millions of soviet prisoners also killed

            suck it up, now gays can civil alw marriage in all 50 states

            if you dont like it move to commie russia where gays marrying wont happen for a millenium

          • btw smitty in the last few years, england,, wales, scotland catholic ireland, france, finland, denmark, Iceland, mexico, uruguay, argentina, slovenia and others have legalized gays marrying under civil law

            others done before – norway, sweden, belgium, hooland, spain portugal, south africa brazil have done the same

            dont like it do what my dog does when its hot and thirsty – takes a drink out of the procelain throne next to the bathtub.

          • ever heard of the “expression” of a gene” eg the effect it has varies from people to people

            eg only one gene controls skin color black, white, yellow red, mixed eg mulardo

            Smimtty reminds me of my ex auto mechanic who re hillary vs obama said in 2008 – what are my choices – a woman or a (n-word”) smitty would probably add the 3 letter F word insult for gays that in england means a cigarette

  • The Catholic Church treats everyone with the same rules. The purpose of sexuality is to bind a man and women together for life, providing a possibility of a stable place to raise children and give them the best start in life possible. It is sometimes troubled, but still the best situation for the children. You do not give up the goal because we fall short. They always have advocated for respect for the person, gay or not, and teach all should live by the same standard.
    Gay has always existed in some shape of form, so the wisdom of over 2,000 years of consistant teaching has provided truth for people regardless of fad or fashion.

  • Hey, about some quotes or communication with the hundreds of organizations in the US that disagree with the LBGT movement. I see you have several from pro-LBGT organizations?

  • I have a question for Dignity and all the LBGT activist groups…why do you want the Catholic Church to change its teachings on doctrine? There are at least 40,000 religious organization’s that have no problem with accepting your chosen life style. Join them…don’t expect the Chirst founded church to change the doctrine or bend on the Ten Commandments…not the ten suggestions!

    • You have little knowledge of what you’re communicating.

      It is the hateful, homophobic language of Catholic doctrine that must change.

      That is a correction of existing bigoted doctrine that need only EXCLUDE anti-LGBT animus while INCLUDING all loving, committed couples and families.

      Marriage and gender need not be mentioned at all.

      Some see it this way…

      For decades now, in secular, civil actions, loud and clear– and In Catholic country after Catholic country– the Holy Spirit has been revealing to Catholics and their popes the truth…

      — Loving, committed LGBT families have the same equal worth and dignity as straight families.

      — Hateful, demonizing language against LGBTs in Catholic doctrine is as untruthful and wrongful as the doctrine of a flat Earth at the center of the universe.

      Francis can fix this outdated Catholic bigotry on his own (with ‘Holy Spirit revelation’), with just an amending encyclical or two.

      • I feel sorry for you and will pray for you. You seem very angry- probably because, in your heart, you know that you are in a destructive lifestyle. I pray you can find peace, but do not expect the Church to change. If the Church turns its back on God’s instruction, then that’s the end of the Church.

        • sooner the better it goes in the dumpster of history

          do your praying over a loaded toilet for all it means to anyone who has enough sense to realize its just babble

          • There is no one on this earth that has more hate inside them than a gay atheist.

          • The LBGT activists are often try to claim they are the victims and they are much more tolerant of others. Unfortunately, you are not very Christian toward those who do not agree or approve of your lifestyle choices. As I said before, I will pray for you.

    • just click on pmmg’s name – right winger to the extreme

      I do agree with him re -get the fck out of the forever backwardds and bizarre mess in the northwest corner of rome

      Itss already dead in much of europe

      mtw the not normal bs of the church has two interpretations —

      1 its uncommon (in iceland and denmark for priede 22011, 2012 i was told by govt ministers and psych that about 9% of teh people admit they arre gay, there is no closet

      • #@nt normal is this horrid house of hate and child moelstesting “celibate priests calling gay people crazy”

        • Isn’t it strange that all you gays disregard the fact that the pedophiles in the Church are gay?

          • another lie – they are the abnormally denied sex – eg celibacy is at tthe root of tthe endless hidden molestation of children

            the gay priests have their fun wih other consensual gay priests consenusally

            why are an estimated 40-50% of catholic priests gay

            because their no so loving parents thru them out of the house when they found out their kid was gay

            smith=========== come out come out of your closet.

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