The Pope surprises the press and a lot of other people.
Pope Francis reached out to gays on Monday, saying he wouldn’t judge priests for their sexual orientation in a remarkably open and wide-ranging news conference as he returned from his first foreign trip.
“If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?” Francis asked.
His predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, signed a document in 2005 that said men with deep-rooted homosexual tendencies should not be priests. Francis was much more conciliatory, saying gay clergymen should be forgiven and their sins forgotten.
Francis’ remarks came Monday during a plane journey back to the Vatican from his first foreign trip in Brazil.
Well, who am I to be churlish and suggest that I’ll believe it when I see it and that the Roman Catholic doctrine that it’s okay to be gay, just don’t “act gay” is still on the books. Get back to me when they celebrate marriage equality and stop calling gay sex a sin.
Still, it’s a change — at least in tone — from the previous two guys. I’ll give him that.