A majority of Bishops at the Synod of Bishops in Rome, voting against the lead of Pope Francis, rolled back on the positive and inclusive approaches towards gay people in the voting on the final document of the Synod.
The final document, published last night, excludes the more open and positive approach used in the version published by the Pope earlier in the week.
“This Synod of Bishops has missed the opportunity to reflect and embrace the very positive changes in attitude towards lesbian and gay people that have come about over the last 20 years” said Kieran Rose, GLEN Chair.
“Most gay and lesbian people and their loving relationships are fully included within their wider family and community circles in Ireland. It is disappointing that the majority of the Synod chose not to reflect that reality, and that elements within the Catholic Church continue to say to lesbian and gay people, and to their parents and families, that they are not welcome” said Rose.
“Irish people, the majority of whom are Catholic, are very welcoming of lesbian and gay people, their relationships and families. We see this in the very warm support by families and communities for civil partnerships and in the very widespread support for access to civil marriage and constitutional equality for lesbian and gay people” said Rose.
“However, the discussion and the votes supporting change at the Synod show that there is an appetite within the Catholic Church to move away from the harsh approach towards lesbian and gay people. We hope that ongoing discussions will lead to change within the Church, building on the non-judgmental approach and leadership of Pope Francis.” concluded Rose.