Pope de­cries LGBT

Of­fi­cial doc­u­ment de­nounces idea of trans­gen­der iden­tity

Mercury (Hobart) - - WORLD -

THE Vatican has is­sued an of­fi­cial doc­u­ment re­ject­ing the idea that peo­ple can choose or change their gen­ders and in­sist­ing on the sex­ual “com­ple­men­tar­ity” of men and women to make ba­bies.

The doc­u­ment, pub­lished dur­ing LGBT Pride Month, was im­me­di­ately de­nounced by LGBT Catholics as con­tribut­ing to big­otry and vi­o­lence against gay and trans­gen­der peo­ple.

Ad­vo­cacy group New Ways Min­istry said it would fur­ther con­fuse in­di­vid­u­als ques­tion­ing their gen­der iden­tity or sex­ual ori­en­ta­tion and at risk of self-harm.

The text, Male and Fe­male He Cre­ated Them, was in­tended to help Catholic teach­ers, par­ents, stu­dents and clergy ad­dress what the Vatican’s Con­gre­ga­tion for Catholic Ed­u­ca­tion called an “ed­u­ca­tional cri­sis” in the field of sex ed­u­ca­tion. It called for a “path of di­a­logue” and lis­ten­ing on the is­sue of “gen­der the­ory” in ed­u­ca­tion.

But even priestly ad­vo­cates for LGBT Catholics noted that the text ap­peared to have re­lied en­tirely on pre­vi­ous pa­pal pro­nounce­ments, Vatican doc­u­ments and philoso­phers and the­olo­gians.

“The real-life ex­pe­ri­ences of LGBT peo­ple seem en­tirely ab­sent from this doc­u­ment,” said WED­NES­DAY, JUNE 12, 2019 Rev­erend James Mar­tin, a Je­suit priest who wrote a book on im­prov­ing Catholic Church outreach to the LGBT com­mu­nity.

“We should wel­come the con­gre­ga­tion’s call to di­a­logue and lis­ten­ing on gen­der, and I hope that con­ver­sa­tion will now be­gin.”

Jay Brown of the Hu­man Rights Cam­paign – the largest LGBT-rights group in the US – said the Vatican’s stance “sends a dan­ger­ous mes­sage that any­body who ex­pe­ri­ences gen­der di­ver­sity is some­how less wor­thy”.

Pope Fran­cis has re­peat­edly ar­gued the po­si­tion that peo­ple can­not choose their gen­ders. But this newly re­leased doc­u­ment rep­re­sents the first at­tempt to put the Vatican’s po­si­tion, first ar­tic­u­lated fully by Pope Benedict XVI in a 2012 speech, into a com­pre­hen­sive, of­fi­cial text.

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