Featured Image
Polish priest Fr. Adam Świeżyński participates in a same-sex 'blessing' ceremony on May 17, 2024, in Warsaw, PolandYouTube/Screenshot

WARSAW, Poland (LifeSiteNews) — A Catholic priest in Poland has participated in a public ceremony to “bless” same-sex couples.

The attempted “blessings” took place on May 17, during an ecumenical service at the Evangelical Reformed Parish in Warsaw in which both Catholic and Protestant clergy were present, including Michał Jabłoński, pastor of the Evangelical Reformed Parish, Halina Radacz, a pastor from the Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession, and Father Adam Świeżyński, a Roman Catholic priest.

According to Polish magazine Wprost, the “blessing” of the same-sex couples took place following an ecumenical service to mark the “International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia.”

READ: Episcopalians’ new ‘pride’ emblem shows how LGBT ideology has overtaken their religion

The outlet reported that the “blessing” ceremony itself was not liturgical in nature, despite Świeżyński’s presence, so as not to breach “canonical regulations.” According to Wprost the “blessings” involved an imposition of hands; however, in the video depicting the ceremony it remains unclear whether Świeżyński attempted to impart “blessings” on participating same-sex couples.

Traditional Catholic teaching, while striving to welcome sinners to repent of their past lives, strongly condemns both homosexual activities and so called same-sex “unions.” In March 2021, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) declared that the Catholic Church cannot bless same-sex relationships as “God… cannot bless sin.”

Among the same-sex couples who presented themselves for a “blessing” during the ceremony were Artur and Jan, both of whom claimed to be “practicing Catholics.”

In an interview with Wprost, Artur declared:

This blessing is very important to us; it is an extra injection of strength for our further life together. We are both believers. Faith allowed us to survive the numerous crises that appeared in our lives. Sometimes it was the strongest anchor that kept us alive.

Uschi Pawlik of the pro-LGBT Faith and Rainbow Foundation, who also claims to be Catholic, told Wprost that, for many Catholics, it remains unacceptable to “bless” same-sex couples. “But Pope Francis clearly shows a change in thinking about relationships in the Church and a transition from rigid rules and principles to pastoral flexibility,” Pawlik posited.

“There are more and more Polish Roman Catholic priests who support LGBT+ people,” she added.

In December 2023, the Vatican issued the declaration Fiducia Supplicans, which approved of priests “blessing” same-sex couples. Various prominent Catholic prelates, theologians, and canon lawyers, such as Cardinal Gerhard Müller, Cardinal Robert Sarah, and Father Gerald Murray, have criticized Fiducia Supplicans for going against traditional Catholic teachings on morality and sexuality.

READ: Cameroon bishops ‘formally forbid all blessings of homosexual couples’

Meanwhile, Świeżyński told Wprost that he hopes Fiducia Supplicans will eventually pave the way to such “blessings” in Polish Catholic churches.

“The fact that this is not currently happening is incomprehensible to me and makes me feel ashamed,” Świeżyński stated. “I interpret this as a denial of Christ’s teaching and a practical negation of his attitude towards people.”

Catholicism remains the majority religion for Poles, at least according to a national census in 2021 revealing that about 71 percent of people identified themselves as Catholics.

Based on a 2022 article by liberal-leaning outlet Notes from Poland, Wojciech Polak, the Archbishop of Gniezno and Primate of Poland, conceded that there has been a “devastating” decline in religious practice among young Poles.

The Polish Catholic episcopate has traditionally adopted a conservative stance on sexual ethics. During a plenary meeting of the Polish Episcopal Conference (KEP) in 2020 at Jasna Góra monastery, which houses the shrine of the Black Madonna of Częstochowa, the bishops released a document pointing out that although LGBT-identifying people deserve respect like anyone else, it “does not mean accepting their views uncritically.”

The bishops’ document slammed the LGBT movement as trying to force a “moral and cultural transformation by gradually accustoming society to behaviors that until recently were considered morally reprehensible,” urging for “clinics to help people who want to regain their natural sexual orientation.”

During a 2019 interview with Polish network TV Republika, the Archbishop of Kraków, Marek Jędraszewski declared that the “LGBT ideology” is “extremely dangerous,” just “like other ideologies: red [communist], Bolshevik or Hitlerite [Nazi].”

Jędraszewski noted that the “LGBT ideology” is “a negation of the vision of God,” who “in creating humankind as woman and man had a very specific plan [about] who each of us is, including biologically.”

The archbishop also highlighted that Poles have formerly “resisted both Bolshevik and Hitlerite ideology,” that “the  country “did not compromise, we [remained] rooted in the Christian, Catholic faith, which was the strength of the nation,” stressing that “the gates of hell shall not prevail.”

Nevertheless, the new leftist Polish coalition government under Donald Tusk, comprising the Civic Coalition (KO), Third Way (Trzecia Droga), and The Left (Lewica), has unveiled plans to push for legal recognition of same-sex unions and criminalize those who say that there are only two sexes.

Shortly after the Tusk government assumed power, the Polish Ministry of Justice suggested draft amendments to Poland’s Penal Code that would impose a sentence of up to three years in prison for actions including insults against people based on their claimed gender, sexual orientation, or other factors.

“We already have the project practically completed. Now it will be sent for inter-ministerial consultations,” Secretary of State at the Ministry of Justice Krzysztof Śmiszek informed Radio TOK FM.

“Now – like other racist or xenophobic crimes – also those based on homophobia or transphobia will be prosecuted ex officio and will be treated as racist hate speech,” Śmiszek asserted.