Aboard papal plane, Francis talks about …

Breaking News: Aboard papal plane, Francis talks about …

Pope Francis answers questions from journalists aboard his flight from Baku, Azerbaijan, to Rome

Francis: Sexual morality determined case-by-case, even for transgender

Pope Francis has said that Catholics must discern difficult situations of sexual morality on a case-by-case basis, even when presented with a person who is considering or has had gender reassignment surgery.

In a lengthy press conference aboard the papal flight back to Rome Oct. 2 after a weekend visit to Georgia and Azerbaijan, the pope said “you must take things as they come” and give time to accompany and discern individually with the various situations people are facing.

Francis recounted a meeting at the Vatican he had last year with a Spanish transgender man who had written to the pontiff to describe his own case and had asked for a personal encounter together.

“She is a young woman who suffered much because she felt like a young man,” the pope explained. “She felt like a young man, but she was physically a young woman.”

The woman, Francis said, had undergone gender reassignment surgery and had then married a woman. “He wrote me a letter saying that, for him, it would be a consolation to come [see me] with his wife,” the pope said, clarifying: “He that was her but is he.”

The pope said that during the meeting the transgender man spoke of his experience in his parish in Spain, where a younger priest had recently replaced his former pastor, who had turned 80.

“When the new pastor would see him, he would shout to him from the sidewalk: ‘You will go to Hell.'” Francis said. “But when the old pastor would come find him, he asked: ‘How long has it been since you confessed? Come and confess so you can have communion.’ ”

“Do you understand?” the pope asked the journalists aboard the flight. “Life is life and you must take things as they come.”

“We must be attentive, not saying all are the same,” he continued. “Every case: Welcome it, accompany it, study it, discerning and integrating.”

“This is what Jesus would do today,” said the pope.

Francis spoke about transgender people in response to a question from a journalist about his frequent criticism of what he has called “gender theory.” In a meeting with Catholics in Georgia Saturday evening, the pontiff had called gender theory “a great enemy” of marriage.

During the press conference, the journalist asked what the pope would say to someone who had struggled for years with their sexuality and felt that their physical appearance did not correspond with their sexual identity.

Francis first responded by revealing that as a priest, bishop “and even as pope” he has accompanied gay people in trying to help them get closer to God.

“I have accompanied people with homosexual tendencies and also with homosexual practices,” said the pontiff. “I have accompanied them, helped them get closer to the Lord; some could not, but I accompanied them and never abandoned anyone.”

“People must be accompanied, as Jesus accompanied,” the pope continued. “When a person who has this situation comes before Jesus, Jesus will surely not say: ‘Go away because you’re homosexual.’ ”

Continuing to explain his views on so-called gender theory, the pontiff made a distinction between what he called “indoctrination” of young persons and accompaniment of people in pastoral situations.

Francis recalled a conversation he had with a French father whose ten-year-old son had told him he wanted to be a girl when he grew up.

“In their schoolbooks gender theory was being taught,” said the pope. “This is against natural things.”

“It is one thing for a person who has this tendency … and also changes their sex,” the pontiff continued. “It is another thing to teach in schools along this line. Changing the mentality: I call this ideological colonization.”

Francis also spoke at the press conference about the upcoming U.S. election and his travel plans for 2017, and he gave hints to when he might create more cardinals for the Catholic church.

Francis tells US Catholics to vote their conscience in November election

Pope Francis has advised U.S. Catholics voting in November’s presidential election to study the proposals of the candidates well, to pray about it, and then “choose in conscience.”

In a lengthy press conference aboard the papal flight back to Rome Oct. 2 after a weekend visit to Georgia and Azerbaijan, the pope was asked what counsel he might give to Catholics who are unhappy with both Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and Republican candidate Donald Trump.

“I never say a word about electoral campaigns,” the pope replied. “The people are sovereign. I will only say: Study the proposals well, pray, and choose in conscience.”

Francis was asked about the election campaign during a 50-minute conference in which he also spoke about how Catholics should treat transgendered people, revealed his travel plans for 2017, and gave hints about when he might create more cardinals for the Catholic church.

After specifically addressing the U.S. election, the pope continued to speak about selection of political candidates in a more general way outside the context of the presidential contest.

“When it happens that in a country, any country, there are two or three or four candidates that do not satisfy everyone, it means that the political life of that country maybe is too politicized,” said the pontiff.

“It is one of the works of the church … to teach about having a political culture,” he continued. “There I countries — I think of Latin America — that are too politicized but they do not have a political culture.”

Regarding his upcoming trips abroad, Francis revealed that he is planning to visit Portugal, India, and Bangladesh in 2017. He also said he is hoping to visit Africa but is unsure about which country as “it depends on the political situations and wars there.”

More from the trip: In Muslim Azerbaijan, Francis calls for interreligious unity against violence

The trip to Portugal, Francis said, would likely be brief and only to Fatima, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the famous apparition of Mary, May 13. The pontiff said the India and Bangladesh trip is “quasi-sure.”

He also said he is still considering a trip to Colombia following the historic peace agreement between the government and FARC rebels there, but wanted to wait until everything was “locked-up” or “when everything is sure, sure, sure” for the success of the peace deal.

Francis said he did not have a firm date yet for when he would create new cardinals but “it could be the end of the year, or the beginning of the next.”

“At the end of the year there is the problem of the end of the Holy Year, but you can resolve it,” he said, referencing the Nov. 20 closing of the Jubilee year for mercy. “Or at the beginning of the next year.”

The pope said his criteria for choosing cardinals is having some “from everywhere” so “you see in the College of Cardinals the universality of the church.”

“The list is long but there are only 13 spots,” he said, in an apparent reference to the current limit imposed by Pope Paul VI of having only 120 cardinals under the age of 80. “You have to think about having a balance.”

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4 comments on “Aboard papal plane, Francis talks about …

  1. [On the tranny front]

    Pope Francis calls woman with sex-change operation a ‘man’ and calls partners ‘married’


    Pope Francis meeting with woman who underwent sex-change surgery (to right of pope) and her ‘wife’ (to left of pope.)

    October 3, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – Despite the Vatican’s assertion that a so-called sex-change surgery does not alter the sex of a person, Pope Francis has nevertheless chosen to refer to a woman who underwent a sex-change operation as a “man,” and also referred to her as having “married” another woman and admitted to receiving them in the Vatican last year.

    As with most of his most controversial remarks, the statements came during an in-flight press scrum. On October 2, on his return flight from his papal visit to Georgia and Azerbaijan, the Pope referred to a woman who “felt like a man” but “was physically a young woman.” After a sex-change surgery in her twenties, Pope Francis said, “he got married.”

    “He wrote me a letter saying that, for him, it would be a consolation to come [see me] with his wife,” the pope said. “I received them and they were very happy,” Pope Francis added. Clarifying his use of pronouns, the pope said, “He that was her but is he.”

    Pope Francis drew a distinction between his frequent condemnation of teaching ‘gender theory’ to young children in classrooms and welcoming, accompanying, and integrating a person who has “this tendency” and even has “a sex change.”

    The meeting of the Pope with the woman with the sex-change surgery and her female partner took place in January 2015 and while it was widely reported in the media with photos, the Vatican refused comment. The woman, now called Diego Neria Lejarraga, said the pope had surprised her by calling her twice out of the blue in December 2014. Neria had written to Francis complaining of rejection from the local parish after she had undergone “gender reassignment.”

    Neria said that it was Pope Francis who asked for the meeting, telling her that he would make the arrangement and call her back. Francis welcomed the two into his private suite at Domus Santa Marta to what she said was a “strictly private meeting.”

    In her letter to the Pope, Neria had specifically noted that she felt excluded from the Church because of her decision, and that she was now “afraid” to receive Communion. She did not tell the media what the pope said on the matter, only mentioning that he embraced her. However, Pope Francis’ own recollection of the matter deals with Communion.

    The Pope spoke of an old retired priest who welcomed Neria and a young new pastor who was harsh. “When the new pastor would see him, he would shout to him from the sidewalk: ‘You will go to Hell.'” Francis said. “But when he’d meet his old priest, he would say to him, ‘How long has it been since you’ve confessed? Come on, confess so you can take Communion.’” (translation by the US Bishops’ Catholic News Service)

    In 2000, the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith issued confidential guidance to bishops noting that ‘sex-change’ procedures do not alter a person’s gender. The document instructed bishops never to alter the sex listed in parish baptismal records and said Catholics who have undergone “sex-change” procedures are not eligible to marry because in the eyes of the Church they would be marrying someone of the same sex.

    A literal translation of the Pope’s full remarks and the question issued by Catholic News Agency follows:

    Josh McElwee, National Catholic Reporter: Thank you, Holy Father. In that same speech yesterday in Georgia, you spoke, as in so many other countries about gender theory, saying that it is a great enemy and a threat against marriage. But, I would like to ask you, what would you say to someone who has struggled with their sexuality for years and feels that there is truly a problem of biology, that his aspect doesn’t correspond to what he or she feels is their sexual identity. You, as a pastor and minister, how would you accompany these people?

    Pope Francis: First of all: in my life as a priest and bishop, even as Pope, I have accompanied people with homosexual tendencies, I have also met homosexual persons, accompanied them, brought them closer to the Lord, as an apostle, and I have never abandoned them. People must be accompanied as Jesus accompanies them, when a person who has this condition arrives before Jesus, Jesus surely doesn’t tell them ‘go away because you are homosexual.’ What I said is that wickedness which today is done in the indoctrination of gender theory…a French father told me that he was speaking with his children at the table, he and his wife were Catholics, ‘rosewater Catholics,’ but Catholics! And he asked his 10-year-old son: ‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’- ‘a girl.’ The father realized that at school they were teaching him gender theory, and this is against the natural things. One thing is that a person has this tendency, this condition and even changes their sex, but it’s another thing to teach this in line in schools in order to change the mentality. This is what I call ideological colonization. Last year I received a letter from a Spaniard who told me his story as a child, a young man, he was a girl, a girl who suffered so much because he felt he felt like a boy, but was physically a girl. He told his mother and the mom…(the girl) was around 22 years old said that she would like to do the surgical intervention and all of those things. And the mother said not to do it while she was still alive. She was elderly and she died soon after. She had the surgery and an employee of a ministry in the city of Spain went to the bishop, who accompanied (this person) a lot. Good bishop. I spent time accompanying this man. Then (the man) got married, he changed his civil identity, got married and wrote me a letter saying that for him it would be a consolation to come with his wife, he who was she, but him! I received them: they were happy and in the neighborhood where he lived there was an elderly priest in his 80s, an elderly pastor who left the parish and helped the sisters in the parish. And there was the new (priest). When the new one he would yell from the sidewalk: ‘you’ll go to hell!’ When (the new priest) came across the old one, he would say: ‘How long has it been since you confessed? Come, come, let’s to so that I can confess you and you can receive communion.’ Understood?

    Life is life and things must be taken as they come. Sin is sin. And tendencies or hormonal imbalances have many problems and we must be careful not to say that everything is the same. Let’s go party. No, that no, but in every case I accept it, I accompany it, I study it, I discern it and I integrate it. This is what Jesus would do today! Please don’t say: ‘the Pope sanctifies transgenders.’ Please, eh! Because I see the covers of the papers. Is there any doubt as to what I said? I want to be clear! It’s moral problem. It’s a human problem and it must be resolved always can be with the mercy of God, with the truth like we spoke about in the case of marriage by reading all of Amoris Laetitia, but always with an open heart. And don’t forget that chapter Vézelay, it’s very beautiful, eh! Very beautiful.

  2. [Nonetheless on the political front, from the former Chief Operating Officer and Chief of Staff at the pro-abort, pro-sodomite USAID (United States Agency for International Development)]

    Clinton, the Vatican more in touch with business than Trump

    By Margaret Sullivan

    It’s startling but true: Hillary Clinton and the Catholic Church are much more aligned with mainstream business values than Donald Trump and what’s left of the Republican Party. Valuing economic success led by real businesses has long seemed a Republican priority, while Democrats cared about caring … “makers versus takers” as the Republican adage goes. That landscape has fundamentally changed. Anyone who cares about business-led prosperity and values must stand with Hillary.

    The Trump part of the story is reasonably well told already, even by his supporters. Donald Trump is no maker — he is a classic taker. Newt Gingrich talks glowingly about Trump being a “pirate” — the very definition of a taker. Trump is all about branding, cunning, and “The Art of the Deal.” With him at its helm, the GOP has become a party of grievance, resentment, and selfishness.

    While Republicans are abandoning business principles and values, Democrats and social justice organizations are often moving in the other direction, seeking to increase impact by using business principles in the service of social change. The field of international development, for example, is transforming.

    Earlier this summer, The Second Vatican Conference on Impact Investing sought increase Church investing in enterprises that help the poor and yield economic returns. Leaders of Church financial institutions worked with Church groups from around the world that serve the poor and heal the sick to engage on how to bring business best practices into social service.

    Much has been made of how Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump began their careers — her fighting injustice, him perpetrating it. The contrast continued through Clinton’s time at State. She led this transformation in development assistance, reorienting U.S. Foreign Aid to value and promote business, creating, among other things:

    • The New Alliance: A G8-led effort to bridge a gap between African leaders and international businesses to expand food production to end famine and promote food security.

    • The Private Capital Group: A USAID-led swat team created to identify and evaluate private sector deals ripe for government support to pursue goals such as doubling energy output and access to power in Subsaharan Africa.

    • The Global Development Lab: An organization to expand the use of cutting edge science, technology and innovation to solve some of the developing world’s most vexing challenges.

    Sending $146 million more to overseas abortion groups

    Funding pro-prostitution and LGBT political activists

    Openly financing the campaigns of homosexual candidates in pro-family countries

    Each of these represented the start of progress that continues and gains international steam each year. Much of it continues work done in the Bush administration. Each of these received broad bipartisan support. New models of sustainable development are engaging businesses and young people across the world.

    These programs help poor people gain access to markets, and they serve US national and business interests. As Secretary of State Clinton said in 2012, “You cannot have development in today’s world without partnering with the private sector and adopting business principles in pursuit of policy goals.”

    During these same years, Donald Trump hosted The Apprentice, failed at Trump U, and got paid to put his name on everything from failing magazines to chocolates and perfumes. Creatively using business approaches to solve problems is what Trump promises but never delivers.

    Pope Francis is leading the way in challenging us to change our expectations of ourselves. Enlightened business leaders are taking longer and broader views, understanding that socially and environmentally sustainable businesses are good business. Only one candidate for President has any credibility as a partner in this great project.

    I’m with her.

  3. From the archives:
    A classic comment from HowlinglyAbsurd


    Layman who identifies as ‘capitalist’ seeks to introduce his business ‘partner’ to the Pope
    Holly Beth McQuackly
    National Catholic Distorter
    October 9, 2015


    Vatican City – A Catholic layman born into a country with voluminous social justice legislation claims that although he has tried very hard to conform to socialist ideals that he has always identified as a free-enterprise capitalist since early childhood. The man who wishes to be known only as ‘Ted’ out of fear for being outed and subjected to persecution says that he has always felt deep down inside as if he were a free-enterprise businessman. Despite years of therapy to transition to being a socialist subjected to taxes exceeding 40% of his income he says he has been unable to break free of his free-enterprise tendencies and orientation.
    Now in Rome, he is hoping that Pope Francis will grant him an audience so that he can introduce his main business partner to the Holy Father and receive an official papal “Who am I to judge?” blessing.

    “It just seems fair,” Ted said, “since other people traditionally viewed as sinners are now being embraced by the Pope that someone like me who was born as a free-enterprise capitalist should also be given a papal dispensation to be the person I have always identified as. Over the years, I tried very hard to conform to Fabian Socialism and Marxist totalitarian policies, but I have to be true to my inner feelings about who I am and the economic orientation I was born with. This week I talked it over with my business partner and we decided it would be best if I came out as a free-enterprise capitalist and sought papal approval.”
    Ted, who also uses air-conditioning on occasion, said it was the Holy Father’s recent visit to Philadelphia which really convinced him in a sudden epiphany to come out as a free-enterprise capitalist. “When I saw those nuns Disco dancing to Sister Sledge’s ‘We Are Family’ and when I heard how much Aretha Franklin was paid for her performance for the Holy Father, I just felt it was the right time. This is not just about lifestyle or tax reform. We really can’t come to the Lord’s table as a family if I have to repress the person I identify as inside. My free-enterprise capitalist orientation is just as valid as that of any card-carrying Fabian Socialist or progressive Maryknollers seeking higher taxes to relieve their conscience.”

    Monsignor Antonio Fettucine, S.T.L., a professor of Systematic Theology at the Gregorian University in Rome, said that some of the Pope’s advisors are studying how Catholics born with a free-enterprise “orientation” have “gifts and talents that should be recognized by the Church despite their different lifestyle.” It was unclear whether this would be addressed at the Synod. Cardinals are reportedly studying the best pastoral methods for addressing the spiritual needs of Catholics with inherent free-enterprise tendencies without stigmatizing them. When asked what his plans were after the meeting with the Holy Father, Ted said, “we have been thinking about having a parade but that is still in the planning stages.”

  4. LOL!!!

    That Holly Beth sure can crank out some snappy patter, can’t she, Andy? She’s a caution f’sure!

    [ insert Andy and Barney pic of your choice ]

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