Prominent gay rights magazine honors pope on 77th birthday

VATICAN CITY Tue Dec 17, 2013 1:34pm EST

Pope Francis waves to the faithful as he appears at the window of his future private apartment in St. Peter's Square, during the Angelus prayer at the Vatican April 1, 2013. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini

Pope Francis waves to the faithful as he appears at the window of his future private apartment in St. Peter's Square, during the Angelus prayer at the Vatican April 1, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Stefano Rellandini

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - The oldest gay rights magazine in the United States named Pope Francis its "Person of the Year" as the pontiff marked his 77th birthday on Tuesday by inviting homeless people to join him for breakfast in the Vatican.

The Advocate magazine said it gave Francis the honour because, although he is still against homosexual marriage, his pontificate so far had shown "a stark change in (anti-gay) rhetoric from his two predecessors".

It hailed as a landmark his famous response last July to a reporter who asked about gay people in the Church: "If a person is gay and seeks God and has good will, who am I to judge?"

The Advocate noted that the Catholic gay organisation "Equally Blessed" called the phrase "some of the most encouraging words a pontiff has ever spoken about gay and lesbian people".

The Vatican has stressed the pope's words did not change Church teachings that homosexual tendencies are not sinful but homosexual acts are.

Still, the gay community and many heterosexuals in the Church have welcomed what they see as a shift in emphasis and a call for the Church to be more compassionate and less condemning.

The Advocate said no-one should "underestimate any pope's capacity for persuading hearts and minds in opening to LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual) people".

Last week, Time magazine gave Francis the same honour, crediting him with shifting the message of the Catholic Church towards mercy and away from condemnation while capturing the imagination of millions.

The Vatican said the pope, the former Cardinal Jorge Mario of Argentina, marked his 77th birthday with his customary morning Mass in the guest house where he has opted to live instead of spacious papal apartments used by his predecessors.

Four homeless people who live on the streets near the Vatican were invited to take part by a Vatican official who administers the pope's charity and stayed for breakfast with the pope and his aides, the Vatican said.

(Editing by Pravin Char)

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Comments (8)
Being black, left-handed or being gay is just as natural. It is a sometimes rare occurrence to fall in Love and to hold that person in your heart and be loved in return … it is something that should be celebrated! If it’s between two guys or two girls — all the better. It takes even more courage to defend that LOVE!

Dec 17, 2013 9:41am EST  --  Report as abuse
ChristopherL wrote:
It’s amazing just how far they’ll go to try an legalize their life style choice because if there were nothing wrong with homosexuality then there would be no need to try and use every means to justify it to the public as they so pain stakingly do. Their on actions condemn themselves and yet they try and blame us for being homophobic if we speak against their choice but that’s it isn’t it, always blame someone else for one’s own ir-responsibile choices in life. How pathetic is that.

The shame is on the pope if he accepts this as he, being the vicar of Christ is supposedly sworn to uphold the truth’s of the Bible but instead he turns a blind eye to Scriptures thus condemning those who choose such a life style to the judgment and damnation that awaits them and all others who reject the clear teachings of Scriptures. He clearly shows himself to be the true Anti-Christ of the Bible’s teachings in Daniel and Revelation in thus doing so.

Anyone who does not warn the individual of their peril before Yaweh because of their sin, whatever it is, cannot truly say he loves the individual and cares about their eternal destiny because love without truth and justice is compromise.

Yaweh loves the sinner but hates the sin and must judge it else He is not a righteous God, The good news is that no matter what the sinner has done he can repent and turn from his sin, be reconciled to Yaweh and enter into the promises of Yaweh for all those who will trust and obey Him, His laws, statues and commandments but the choice is yours.

In Christian Love … ChristopherL

Dec 17, 2013 10:07am EST  --  Report as abuse
The Bible should be banned!

Here are several really loving excerpts from the Torah; the first five books of the Old Testament in the bible — perhaps read to the congregation on Friday night at a synagogue or a Sunday morning church in the meadow.

1. Kill any friends or family that worships a god that is different than your own. Deuteronomy 13:6-10
2. Kill all the inhabitants of any city where you find people that worship differently than you. Deuteronomy 13:12-16
3. Kill everyone who has religious views that are different than your own. Deuteronomy 17:2-7.

Rabbinical / Priestly rules: Leviticus 21:17-18 … “No one who is blind or lame or has a defect or any blemish may approach to offer the bread of his God.” Leviticus 18:22 … “You are not to go to bed with a man as with a woman; it is an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them.”

Rabbis; the pope and churches fully aware that Leviticus 18:22 applies to rabbis and priests … refuse to remove this stigma maliciously persecuting gays. Kids are being bullied into suicide …!

I am the son of a catholic father who never went to church and a protestant mother who took us to church and Sunday school. Onward christian soldiers; I think not. Such absolute drivel. To be manipulated by a santa claus; an easter bunny and worst of all a bogus cross? It’s now time to shut down the synagogues and churches with the torah & bibles with Leviticus 18:22 and Deuteronomy 13:12-16. To see the religious lunatics manipulate government and peoples’ lives — is shameful.

Many theologians state quite correctly that the birth; crucifixion; resurrection and other elements of christianity actually didn’t even happen! Churches are committing hate crimes and more succinctly a violent criminal offence against a federally protected minority namely the gay community. It is actually a bigger moment in history … gays standing up for equality … the realization that there is something far more evil at work — hateful religion which should be discharged from society – period.

Religion and the churches should now be exposed as a bigoted structure that gets away with hate mongering. It is a criminal offence to cause harm onto others physically or with written items; torahs – old testament/new testament bibles have been getting away with corruption and cultism based on bogus hocus pocus.

There is no scientific evidence to prove any of the cross related bogus elements of christianity and other religions. Our early human ancestors; on this earth … go back more than 6 million years … 5,996,000 years before the Greeks, Romans and the Jews. Christianity is basically a 2012 year old fictional cult. In the year 300 AD when Emperor Constantine, who to some was the first pope; went on to fabricate & market Christianity! Christianity is a fantasy; which turned out to be one of the most hateful & evil concoctions ever perpetrated on the world.

Dec 17, 2013 2:08pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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