VATICAN CITY, February 11, 2013, (LifeSiteNews.com) – Homosexual Catholic groups hope after Pope Benedict XVI steps down, a new “progressive” Pope will champion LGBT issues, female ordination, and contraception at a Third Vatican Council.

“The new Pope will have an opportunity like Pope John XXIII to open wide windows of the Church so that fresh ideas may fill the Church by calling for a new Ecumenical Council of the Church, Vatican III,” said the Rainbow Sash Movement in a press release on Pope Benedict XVI's resignation.

“The resignation of Pope Benedict XVI [is] an opportunity for the Church to finally to start addressing the many scandals that are facing it,” the dissenting organization said. “Those range from the clergy sexual abuse scandal, birth control issues, women’s ordination, sexuality that deals with the human rights of LGBT People, and looming largely on the horizon are financial issues that involve a lack of ethics that would create a culture of transparency and accountability.”

The group of homosexual and transgender Catholics stated the next pope should step away from an emphasis on “purity.” Instead, he must “continue the reforms of Vatican II” and “seriously embrace the road to Ecumenicalism.” [sic]

New York Times reporter and columnist Nicholas Kristof wrote that he would like to see the Catholic Church change its policy ”on contraception, on female and non-celibate priests, and on gays...The church has such influence worldwide that it would be great to see a Vatican III!”

The homosexual Catholic group Equally Blessed cited the Vatican's worldwide impact, claiming that by “promoting discrimination against LGBT people, the church inflicts pain on marginalized people, alienates the faithful, and lends moral credibility to reactionary political movements across the globe.”

To right this wrong, DignityUSA called “on the Cardinals and the new Pope to enter into a true dialogue with our community. We call for an end to statements that inflict harm on already marginalized people, depict us as less than fully human, and lend credence to those seeking to justify discrimination.”

The new pope, the group hopes, will “not only to embrace but...champion” the homosexual rights movement.

“History reminds us that no one expected the election of Pope John XXIII in 1958, and in calling the Second Vatican Council, he clearly moved the church into a more progressive era,” wrote Francis DeBernardo of New Ways Ministry.

The statements of Equally Blessed and DignityUSA were faithfully reported by the National Catholic Reporter. In its coverage of Pope Benedict's resignation Monday, Reuters news service also printed unattributed statements hoping the next pope would be “more progressive.”

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The present pontiff's unwavering loyalty to the Magisterium's teaching on moral issues provoked a series of public clashes with liberal dissenters, as well as behind-the-scenes battles with European bishops, both as pope for eight years and previously as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF).

“For the last three decades, [Pope] Benedict has been one of the main architect’s of the Vatican’s policies against LGBT people,” wrote DeBernardo, who rehearsed his own organization's history of clashes with the pontiff. 

“New Ways Ministry directly experienced those harsh policies several times over the years, most notably in 1999 when the CDF attempted to silence our organization’s co-founders, Sister Jeannine Gramick and Father Robert Nugent,” he added. “Fortunately, we have survived the many attempts by the Vatican to end our ministry, and, thanks to the support of so many Catholics, we have emerged stronger for it.”

As the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger said the ministry's work was “doctrinally unacceptable” and enjoined them from further ministry or writing on homosexuality.

Yet last Valentine’s Day, DeBernardo and Sr. Grammick penned an op-ed in The Washington Post entitled, A Catholic Case for Same-Sex Marriage.”

The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that homosexual activities constitute “grave depravity...Under no circumstances can they be approved.”