Pope speaks about acceptance

BY SARAH BECKLEY
FAITH CORRESPONDENT

Pope Francis believes the church should not interfere in the spiritual lives of gays and lesbians.
In an interview released by America Magazine on Sept. 19, Pope Francis said although the Church maintains its own view of homosexuality, it should not intervene in the lives of gays and lesbians. He said the Church’s obsession with the subject is overshadowing the main purpose of the church: to be “a home for all.”
Francis said the Church needs to focus on serving others instead of dwelling on the enforcement of doctrines. In the end, God’s love rises above these moral doctrines. He said people want the clergy to act as pastors and not as government officials. He believes when the church is small minded, its mission diminishes.
“We have to find a new balance,” Francis said, “otherwise even the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards, losing the freshness and fragrance of the Gospel.”
Sophomore Loren Mastroberti thinks the Francis’ comments will encourage others.
“This should inspire people,” Mastroberti said. “Everyone should be able to do whatever they want. Everyone should be open to their own decisions. People probably turned themselves away from the church before because they didn’t feel welcomed.”
Sophomore Jedediah Stewart believes the Francis’ comments can also upset church members.
“I think older generations that grew up with the tradition of man and woman are going to be upset by this, but I think a younger generation or people more willing for change are going to accept this and help the church move forward.”
When asked about gays and lesbians in the past, Francis said. “If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?” He said one should look at other people for who they are and not just their sexual orientation.
“Tell me: when God looks at a gay person, does he endorse the existence of this person with love, or reject and condemn this person? We must always consider the person,” Francis said. “Here we enter into the mystery of the human being. In life, God accompanies persons, and we must accompany them, starting from their situation. It is necessary to accompany them with mercy.”

Contact the writer:
sarah.beckley@scranton.edu

One Response to Pope speaks about acceptance

  1. Briptu Reply

    February 11, 2016 at 9:51 pm

    Julie, thank you for posting your qutsoien and response. This has been something that I have been struggling with as well. On one hand I know that the Church sees marriage as joining of 2 souls to become 1 with one of the main focus of that marriage is to have children. On the other hand, I see nothing wrong with being able to designate someone you love as being able to make medical decisions for you if you are unable, ability to avoid estate taxes when a person you lived with for 30 years passes away or have someone you can confide in. With the way the laws are set up the only way to achieve this is through marriage (unless you can afford a lawyer to prepare legal documents and this will only take care of some of these issues). The Church is not against love. It isn’t against two people of the same sex living a life together. What it is against is sex between two men or two women because that type of sex is not capable of producing children. So the way I see it is there are really 2 separate issues here that people are confusing as one. The Church is arguing that marriage between 2 men or 2 women is not right in God’s eyes because no children can come of that marriage. Don’t forget we refer to God as Our Father and Mary as Blessed Mother. The gay right movement is focused on the legal benefits of marriage. Being able to visit a partner in the hospital, avoiding tax penalties, provide health insurance to someone they love. I personally believe the gay right movement focusing on marriage and not civil unions is because they feel they would not be treated equally (it would be like a second class marriage). I do see the argument for this. We know how the south was segregated for so many years and how separate but equal was not truly equal. To me the real way to solve this to provide an easy way for someone to designate another that they would like to have the legal ability to make decisions (health, legal or otherwise), ability to designate one person (other then one’s children) that they would like to add to their health care plan, and the right to provide the house 2 people have shared for years to avoid being taxed outrageously when the other person passes. To me this would be more inline with what Jesus would be in favor of. Don’t forget that Jesus told John to take care of Mary after He rose from the dead. In our current legal and health system, John would not have been able to visit Mary if she was in the hospital or make legal decisions if she was not able to do so. I personally don’t think that is what Jesus would have wanted and we should look for a way to provide the benefits that have been attached to those that are married in the government eyes to those that do not fit into the one man/one women marriage role, but to those that are single and want to select their best friend of 20 years or two men or two women that chose to share a life together. As Catholics, we need to stop believing that the best way to stop sin is through the legal system and start looking for ways to support and truly show love to one another.

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