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Pope Francis slams 'hypocrisy' of critics of same-sex blessings

By Yoniel Acebuche Published Feb 08, 2024 3:44 pm

For Pope Francis, there is hypocrisy in people who are slamming the Vatican's approval of blessings for same-sex couples.

Citing the Italian Catholic magazine Credere, Reuters reported that the Pope stood by his decision to authorize such as he cited examples of what he considers "grave sin" and "hypocrisy."

"Nobody gets scandalized if I give my blessings to a businessman who perhaps exploits people, and this is a very grave sin. But they get scandalized if I give them to a homosexual," the 87-year-old pontiff told Credere.

"This is hypocrisy," he added.

The media outlet also said that the Pope's remarks are possibly his "most strongly worded defense of the move" so far.

The head of the Catholic Church emphasized that giving a blessing is genderless.

"No one should be denied a blessing," he said.

He also reiterated that such blessings do not equate to official Church approval of same-sex relationships.

"When a couple comes forward spontaneously to ask for them, one does not bless the union, but simply the people who together have requested it. Not the union, but the persons," he stressed.

In December 2023, the Vatican authorized blessings for same-sex couples as long as they are not in contexts related to civil unions or weddings.

The decision stated that this blessing must "not be performed with any clothing, gestures, or words that are proper to a wedding" to avoid confusion and "scandal."

"Such a blessing may instead find its place in other contexts, such as a visit to a shrine, a meeting with a priest, a prayer recited in a group, or during a pilgrimage," it added.

The move has been deemed a "game changer" as this is the first time that the Catholic Church opened the way to same-sex relationships and their blessing, which traditional and conservative believers have vehemently opposed. (with reports from AFP)