Pope Francis told parents this week that they should support gay children and “never condemn” them.
The 85-year-old progressive pontiff made his latest LGBT-supporting comments Wednesday during an unscripted part of his weekly audience as he discussed difficulties faced by parents.
Those issues included “parents who see different sexual orientations in their children and how to handle this, how to accompany their children, and not hide behind an attitude of condemnation,” Francis said.
“To them I say: Don’t be afraid … Never condemn a child,” he continued, according to Agence France-Presse.
He further spoke admiringly of mothers he once saw in his native Argentina waiting outside a Buenos Aires prison to see sons “who had made a mistake.”
“They showed their faces, they didn’t hide and they supported him, always. What courage,” he said of the moms.
Francis has previously said gay people have a right to be accepted by their families as children and siblings, and has sent notes of appreciation to priests and nuns who minister to gay Catholics.
He has also said that while the Church cannot accept same-sex marriage, it can support civil union laws aimed at giving gay partners joint rights in areas of pensions and health care and inheritance issues.
Last year, the Vatican’s doctrinal office issued a document saying that Catholic priests cannot bless same-sex unions, a ruling that greatly disappointed gay Catholics.
With Post wires