Earlier this week, the Pope seemed to show support towards the LGBTQ community after he told a gay man, who was a victim of clerical sexual abuse, that God made him and loves him as he is.
However, it has now emerged that the Pope has recently told Italian bishops to reject applicants to the priesthood, if they suspect that the applicant is gay.
His comments surfaced following a report from La Stampa’s Vatican Insider service. While addressing the 71st General Assembly of the Italian Episcopal Conference, Pope Francis is said to have said: “Keep an eye on the admissions to seminaries, keep your eyes open.”
He also added: “If in doubt, better not let them enter.”
Elaborating on why he thought they should be rejected, the Pope is said to have told the conference that the practice of “homosexual acts” could compromise the life of the person admitted, and could end up creating a “scandal.”
Although Pope Francis is considerably better on LGBTQ rights than many of his predecessors, his views are still wildly inconsistent.
Back in 2016, he told reporters: “[Gay people] should not be discriminated against. They should be respected, accompanied pastorally.” And last year, he also sent a surprise letter to a same-sex couple in Brazil, in which he congratulated them for baptising their children.
However, in that same year, he answered a question about gender identity, saying: “You mentioned a great enemy of marriage: gender theory. Today, there is a global war out to destroy marriage. Not with weapons but with ideas… we have to defend ourselves from ideological colonisation.”
He later clarified his comments to reporters, saying: “It is one thing for a person to have this tendency, this option, and even change sex. But it is another thing to teach it, gender theory, in schools along these lines in order to change mentality. I call this ideological colonisation.”
He’s spoken out against the trans community in the past – saying it’s “terrible” that kids are taught they can “choose” their gender.
He also backed anti-marriage equality protesters in Mexico, claiming that they are fighting “in favour of family and life”.