Reuters - Video

Edition: US | UK | IN | CN | JP

video Top News

Cuba's LGBT hope Francis visit helps fight Catholic homophobia

Thursday, September 17, 2015 - 01:50

Members from Cuba's LGBT community hope Pope Francis will take a stance against Catholic homophobia, while a new Protestant Evangelical Church on the island welcomes gays and provides blessings to same-sex marriages. Nathan Frandino reports.

▲ Hide Transcript

View Transcript

While the rainbow flag flies a bit more free these days in Cuba, members of the LGBT community are hoping for a change in the tide with the visit of Pope Francis. The church has historically been riddled with sexual prejudice, giving some less confidence that the pope will affect change. Journalist and LGBT activist Francisco Rodriguez says it would take a miracle. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) JOURNALIST, BLOGGER AND LGBT ACTIVIST, FRANCISCO RODRIGUEZ, SAYING: "A miracle that would make the Pope take, maybe while here in Cuba, a more open position, more progressive than what he has had in relation to the issue of sexual diversity and LGBT rights. And I think that is maybe a lot to ask him, but in this climate of spirituality why not aspire for that to happen?" Pope Francis will soon arrive in Cuba, where the gay community has made great strides in recent years after decades of hostilities. While not Catholic -- one new church is proud to welcome members of the LGBT community. The Protestant evangelical Metropolitan Community Church is the first church in Cuba to celebrate same-sex marriage. Adiel Gonzalez, one of the congregation's founders, hopes the church spurs a positive change among Christian attitudes in Cuba. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) COORDINATOR OF PROJECT 'ABRIENDO BRECHAS DE COLORES, ADIEL GONZALEZ, SAYING: "Christianity in Cuba is still very difficult. It's very conservative and very homophobic. Most churches are not willing to discuss the matter. And I think that introducing a church like this in Cuba and starting a discussion about accepting sexual diversity in a positive manner, in a real way, is in some way going to make the other churches start discussing it." And whether the Pope can help spread those discussions to other churches on this historic visit remains to be seen.

Press CTRL+C (Windows), CMD+C (Mac), or long-press the URL below on your mobile device to copy the code

Cuba's LGBT hope Francis visit helps fight Catholic homophobia

Thursday, September 17, 2015 - 01:50