June 21, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – Pope Francis on Saturday denounced the use of the word “family” to refer to unions that do not consist of a man and a woman, sparking condemnation from homosexual activists, who noted the mixed signals that Francis has sent regarding LGBT issues during his pontificate.
In extemporaneous remarks to a delegation of Italy’s Forum of Family Associations, Francis said that it “hurts” to speak of the fact that the word “family” is being used apart from the definition of traditional marriage.
“Then today – it hurts to say this – we talk about ‘diversified’ families: different types of families,” said Francis.
“Yes, it is true that the word ‘family’ is an analogical word, because we speak of the ‘family’ of the stars, the ‘families’ of the trees, the ‘families’ of the animals … it is an analogical word. But the human family as an image of God, man and woman, is only one. It is only one,” the pontiff said.
The pope lamented the superficial attitude of many towards marriage and the consequent disposition to divorce, reminding his audience that marriage between a man and a woman was established by God, to act as a “sacred” image of God himself.
“Today – it pains me to say this – we see that many times we think of starting a family and getting married as if it were a lottery: ‘Let's go. If it goes, it goes. If it does not work, we’ll delete the thing and start again.’ This superficiality on the greatest gift God gave to humanity: the family,” said Francis.
“After the story of the creation of man, God shows that He created man and woman in His image and likeness,” the pope continued. “And Jesus Himself, when He speaks of marriage, says: ‘Man will leave his father and mother and with his wife they will become one flesh.’ Because they are the image and likeness of God.”
“You are an icon of God: the family is an icon of God,” said Francis. “Man and woman: it is precisely the image of God. He said it, not me. And this is great, it is sacred.”
The pope also sought to remove the focus on chapter eight of his apostolic exhortation Amoris laetitia, in which he seems to permit divorced and invalidly remarried couples to receive Holy Communion in contradiction to the traditional doctrine and law of the Catholic Church. Instead, he urged his listeners to focus on the fourth chapter of the document, which discusses the necessity of patience, kindness, and forgiveness within marriage, calling it the “core” of the document.
“Read, read the fourth chapter. The fourth chapter is the core of Amoris laetitia,” said Francis. “It is indeed the spirituality of every day of the family. Some have reduced Amoris laetitia to a sterile casuistry of ‘we can, we cannot.’ They did not understand anything!”
The pope’s statements in favor of traditional marriage are in contrast with other acts by Francis that have suggested sympathy with the LGBT cause, including welcoming a former male student and his boyfriend to the Holy See’s embassy in the U.S., placing a bishop who is credibly accused of homosexual behavior in charge of the corrupt Vatican Bank, and even reportedly telling a homosexual that “God made you gay,” a widely reported statement that has not been denied by the Holy See. The Vatican has also appointed Fr. James Martin, an open advocate of the LGBT agenda, as a consultant for its Secretariat of Communications.
Homosexual news outlets expressed outrage at the pope’s remarks, and noted the ambiguity of his approach to homosexuality and the LGBT movement.
“Although the 266th and current Pope has been widely lauded as a reformer on LGBTQ rights, these comments exemplify his hot-and-cold relationship toward queer and transgender communities,” stated a writer for the homosexualist publication Into. “While appearing to soften the Vatican Church’s historical opposition to homosexuality and trans identity, he has doubled down on many of the faith’s most homophobic tendencies.”
Lack of commitment to life lead to Nazi-like euthanasia, says Francis
Pope Francis also drew a connection between a selfish and consumerist attitude towards marriage, and the practice of eugenic abortions, which he characterized as “the murder of children.” He compared the practice to that of the Nazis, who killed tens of thousands of handicapped children in its hospital eugenics programs.
“Once I met a couple married for ten years, without children. It is very delicate to speak about this, because very often children are wished for but do not come, do they? I didn’t know how to manage the issue,” said Francis. “Then I found out that they did not want children. But these people had three dogs and two cats at home… It is nice to have a dog, a cat, it is nice. … Or when at times you hear them say to you, ‘Yes, yes, but we don’t want children yet because we must buy a house in the country, then travel….’”
“Children are the greatest gift. Children are to be welcomed as they come, as God sends them, as God permits – even if at times they are sick,” the Pope said.
“I have heard it said that it is in vogue – or at least it is habitual – in the early months of pregnancy to carry out certain tests, to see if the child is not well, or if he or she comes with a problem. The first proposal in this case is: ‘Shall we do away with him?’ The murder of children. And to have a quiet life, an innocent life is taken.”
“When I was a boy, the teacher taught us history and said what the Spartans did when a child with malformations was born: they took him to the mountain and threw him down, to ensure ‘the purity of the race.’ And we were shocked. ‘But how, how can one do this, poor children!’ It was an atrocity,” said Francis.
“Today we do likewise. Have you ever asked yourselves why we do not see many dwarves on the streets? Because the protocol of many doctors – many, not all – is to ask the question: ‘It this a problem?’ It pains me to say so. In the last century the world was scandalized by what the Nazis did to ensure racial purity. Today we do the same thing, but wearing white gloves.”
The pope’s very strong words against eugenic abortions follow months of silence on the pope’s part regarding the legalization of abortion in Argentina and Ireland. He has briefly mentioned the right to life in a single letter to the Argentinean people, and he made no statement about a popular referendum to legalize abortion in Ireland, which recently succeeded.
In addition to his off-the-cuff remarks, the pope’s formal address to the group also mentioned the problem of low birth rates in Italy, and encouraged governments to be more supportive of parents who wish to have more children.
“Do not tire of supporting the growth of birth rates in Italy, sensitizing the institutions and the public opinion on the importance of giving life to policies and structures that are more open to the gift of children,” said Francis. “It is a genuine paradox that the birth of children, which constitutes the greatest investment for a country and the first condition of its future prosperity, often represents a cause of poverty for families, due to the lack of support they receive or the inefficiency of many services.”
Read the full text of Pope Francis’ comments here.