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Renegade Bishop Pulled as Speaker at Pride Event

ROME, July 4 (LSN.ca) – Organizers of World Gay Pride in Rome had scheduled a controversial French bishop to speak at the event. Bishop Jacques Gaillot, who was removed from the Diocese of Evreux, France in 1995 because of his unorthodox public stands, was scheduled to speak on “homosexuality and religion.” However, Gaillot backed out of the appearance after receiving a call from the president of the French bishop’s conference.

Catholic World News reports that Gaillot then took his story to the press claiming that the pope had ordered him not to speak at the event. He also attacked Church teaching on homosexuality saying the Church must “repent as far as homosexuality is concerned.” Gaillot said that he knew “many serious and committed homosexuals, and I see no reason to prevent them from taking responsibility within the Church at the highest levels.”

Given the confusion caused in the press by the controversy, Church spokesmen reiterated the Catholic teaching on homosexuality to the media. Rome Catholic papers L’Osservatore Romano, Civilta Cattolica, and Avennire carried comments by Fr. Georges Cottier a Vatican theologian and others who noted while it is true that homosexuals should be treated with respect, it is not true that homosexual actions should be considered normal or healthy.

(with files from Catholic World News)

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