Ireland’s Leo Varadkar had said he will challenge Pope Francis on the ‘equality’ of same-sex families on his upcoming visit, with the establishment demanding the pontiff scrap the church’s “evil” teachings on homosexuality.
Ireland’s openly gay prime minister, who marched alongside his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau at Montreal Pride last year, is due to meet the Pope at Dublin Castle later this month when he visits for the Vatican-sponsored World Meeting of Families (WMF).
Asked what he would say to Pope Francis, Varadkar told journalists he would express “our view as a society and as a government that families come in all sorts of different forms and that includes families led by same-sex parents”.
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Questioned at a recent press briefing on what he was planning to tell the Pope, Varadkar said he would express “our views as a society and a government that families come in all sorts of different forms and that includes families that are… by same-sex parents and other families as well.”
With 170 invitations to the reception being handed out this week, a number of figures from Ireland’s political establishment have vowed to push the Pope on LGBT issues and other areas where church teachings fail to align with left-liberal Western opinion in 2018, such as contraception and female priests.
Former Irish president Mary McAleese said earlier this week that she was hopeful the Church’s “evil” teachings on homosexuality would be changed, asserting that Catholic doctrine had been “very hard on gay men and women, gay children, and gay adolescents”.
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Noting that the Pope, who is regarded as a left-leaning, globalist pontiff, recently made comments reversing centuries of Church teaching on capital punishment, the Council of State member claimed this “exploded the myth” that doctrine could not be changed.
Mrs McAleese, who in March declared a hierarchy that is “homophobic and anti-abortion is not the Church of the future”, added that she hoped the WMF would be free of “homophobic messages”.
The lesbian minister for children and youth affairs, Katherine Zappone, also pledged to raise LGBT issues with the Pope at the Dublin Castle reception, having blasted his assertion last month that only heterosexual couples can form real families.