On Wednesday, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, was chosen as the first Latin American pope and first pope from the Americas. He will lead the Catholic Church as Pope Francis. He is a conservative who opposes gay adoption and gay marriage. In the past, he has described gay marriage as the devil’s work and a “destructive attack on God’s plan.” He has also noted in the past that gay adoption is discriminating against children.
The National Catholic Register said that Francis worked against a bill for same-sex marriage and gay adoption in 2010.
“[T]he Argentine people will face a situation whose outcome can seriously harm the family,” he wrote to the four monasteries in Argentina. “At stake is the identity and survival of the family: father, mother and children. At stake are the lives of many children who will be discriminated against in advance, and deprived of their human development given by a father and a mother and willed by God. At stake is the total rejection of God’s law engraved in our hearts.”
Francis described these things as a “‘move’ of the Father of Lies who seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God.” He also told lawmakers to “not act in error.” Same-sex marriage was approved by Argentina in 2010, which made it the first country in Latin America to legalize it.
The President of GLAAD, Herndon Graddick, issued the following statement in response to the election of the new pope. It was obtained by The Huffington Post:
“For decades the Catholic hierarchy has been in need of desperate reform. In his life, Jesus condemned gays zero times. In Pope Benedict’s short time in the papacy, he made a priority of condemning gay people routinely. This, in spite of the fact, that the Catholic hierarchy had been in collusion to cover up the widespread abuse of children within its care. We hope this Pope will trade in his red shoes for a pair of sandals and spend a lot less time condemning and a lot more time foot-washing.”
Graddick also made it a found to address the previous comments made by Francis regarding gay adoption being a “discrimination against children.”
“The real discrimination against children is the pedophilia that has run rampant in the Catholic Church with little more than collusion from the Vatican,” he said.
The Chief Executive of Stonewall, Ben Summerskill, also said, “We hope Pope Francis shows more Christian love and charity to the world’s 420 million lesbian, gay and bisexual people than his predecessor.”
The biographer of Pope Francis, Sergio Rubin, defended him, saying, “Is Bergoglio a progressive – a liberation theologist even? No,” he told the AP. “He’s no third-world priest. Does he criticize the International Monetary Fund, and neoliberalism? Yes. Does he spend a great deal of time in the slums? Yes.”