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Pope Francis and Father James Martin, S.J.Vatican News/X

VATICAN CITY (LifeSiteNews) — The Vatican has published Pope Francis’ preface to a book by pro-LGBT Father James Martin, S.J., in which the pontiff makes a statement that may be interpreted to claim that one can maintain friendship with God while in mortal sin. 

In September 2023, Martin’s book Come Forth: The Promise of Jesus’s Greatest Miracle was published, described as a “meditation on the Raising of Lazarus” and used by Martin to urge homosexuals to “come out” and “embrace” their homosexual tendencies. On Monday, Vatican News published Francis’ preface to Martin’s Italian version of the book, with the preface itself dated on March 11, 2024.

READ: Fr. James Martin says Christ raising Lazarus from dead is ‘invitation’ for ‘LGBTQ people’ to ‘come out’

Francis opened the preface noting, “Father James Martin [is] the author of many other books that I know and appreciate,” among which are Building a Bridge, Martin’s notorious 2017 pro-LGBT book in which he attempts to normalize homosexuality and criticizes Catholic doctrine that homosexuality is “disordered.” The heretical Jesuit has elsewhere affirmed homosexual activity despite the Catholic Church’s teaching that such activity is mortally sinful.

READ: Cardinal Müller: Father James Martin’s LGBT propaganda is ‘heresy’

Francis continued, “Jesus didn’t just talk about eternal life; He gave it to us. He didn’t just say ‘I am the resurrection’; He also resurrected Lazarus, who’d been dead for three days.” He went on to incorrectly claim that the “divine” is never separated from the “human” in Christianity, writing: “Christian faith is the ever-present co-mingling of the eternal and the contingent, of heaven and earth, of the divine and the human—never one without the other.”

“All of us, then, are Lazarus,” wrote Francis, going on to reference Martin’s book: “Rooting himself firmly in the Ignatian tradition, Father Martin brings us directly into the story of this friend of Jesus. We’re His friends, too—’dead’ as we sometimes are on account of our sins, our failings and infidelities, the despondency that discourages us and crushes our spirits.”

Without quoting Martin or pointing to a specific passage in his book, Francis appears to suggest that one can be friends with God even while “dead” in mortal sin, while, on the contrary, the Church has always understood mortal sin to be a breaking of one’s friendship with God.

READ: Cardinal Sarah blasts Vatican advisor for opposing Church on homosexuality

Francis has signaled his support of Martin in many ways despite the latter’s support of homosexuality, such as by appointing and re-appointing him as a Vatican Communications consultant and by meeting with Martin and praising his pro-LGBT initiatives. 

Martin has previously proposed that the Catechism of the Catholic Church use the term “differently ordered” rather than “intrinsically disordered” in reference to sinful homosexual acts. He frequently makes scandalous statements regarding homosexuality that violate Catholic teaching on sexual morality. High-profile prelates and Catholic figures warn that Martin is leading people astray and putting souls at risk by encouraging homosexual activity and failing to call people to be chaste.


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