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‘HOMOPHOBIC’: Pope apologises after one word gay slur sparks fury

Pope Francis sparked controversy after reportedly using an offensive gay slang word during a meeting with Italian bishops.

‘HOMOPHOBIC’: Pope apologises after one word gay slur sparks fury

Pope Francis, who had been regarded as being more respectful than his predecessors toward LGBTI people, has apologised after using a homophobic slur.

The Head of the Catholic Church used an offensive gay slang word during a meeting with Italian bishops, where he is said to have joked about the number of gay men in seminaries, according to media reports.

Italian newspapers reported that during a private meeting at the Italian Bishops’ Conference on May 20, the 87-year-old pontiff used the derogatory Roman term “frociaggine”. That approxomately translates as the offensive English words “f*ggots” or “p**fs”.

The Pope’s comments were said to be a response to proposals to allow openly gay men to join seminaries, priest training colleges, which have explicitly banned gay men from applying since 2005.

Francis reportedly said people of all sexualities should be respected but openly gay men should not be admitted.

He then allegedly added that there were “already too many ‘frociaggine’” in some seminaries.

 

Pope Francis reportedly used an offensive gay slang word during a meeting with Italian bishops, where he joked about the number of gay men in seminaries
Pope Francis reportedly used an offensive gay slang word during a meeting with Italian bishops, where he joked about the number of gay men in seminaries

Pope’s apology

The La Repubblica and Corriere della Sera newspapers, which first reported the comments, said that the Pope did not realise how offensive the word was as the Argentine pontiff’s first language is Spanish.

It was reported that the Pope's’ comments were met with “incredulous laughter”.On Tuesday, the Vatican issued a statement apologising for the furore which comes just days before Pride Month kicks off.

Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said Francis was aware of the comments that had been attributed to him in a “behind closed doors conversation”.

“The Pope never intended to offend or express himself in homophobic terms and he addresses his apologies to those who felt offended by the use of the term as reported by others.

“In the Church there is room for everyone, for everyone!” said Mr Bruni.

“Nobody is useless, nobody is superfluous, there is room for everyone. Just as we all are.”

 

People gather as Pope Francis presides a mass on World Children's Day at St Peter's Basilica in the Vatican on May 26, 2024.
People gather as Pope Francis presides a mass on World Children's Day at St Peter's Basilica in the Vatican on May 26, 2024.

Pope usually respectful to LGBTI people

The Pope’s comments are particularly surprising because since he became pontiff in 2013 he has generally looked to change the institution's approach to LGBTI people.

Francis has sought to present a Catholic Church that is more open to people of all sexualities as well as unmarred couples and overall a church that is less judgmental.

The year he entered the Vatican he was asked by a journalist about his thoughts on gay priests.

“Who am I to judge?” was his reply.

 

Pope Francis speaks during World Children's Day event at the Olympic stadium in Rome on May 25, 2024. (Photo by Filippo MONTEFORTE / AFP)
Pope Francis speaks during World Children's Day event at the Olympic stadium in Rome on May 25, 2024. (Photo by Filippo MONTEFORTE / AFP)

Last year, Francis allowed Catholic priests to bless same-sex relationships, as well as unmarried couples, so long as the blessing was not part of regular church rituals.

“The grace of God works in the lives of those who do not claim to be righteous but who acknowledge themselves humbly as sinners, like everyone else,” said Cardinal Victor Manuel Fernandez on the change.

The Pope has also suggested his support for civil recognition of same sex couples.

However, the Catholic Church has stopped short of allowing religious marriage of same sex couples. Officially, the church only believes sex should be between married heterosexual couples.

Official church doctrine still states same-sex acts are “intrinsically disordered”.

Gay men are also not allowed to become priests.

Author: Editors Desk

Source: News Corp Australia Network:

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