In January, the liberal Vatican news outlet, La Croix International, ran an article with the startling title, “The First Gay Pope”. The story was written by Robert Mickens and carried the subtitle, “The real reasons why Pope Francis is pushing Catholics to become more welcoming and less judgmental of gays and lesbians”.
Mickens justified his title by reminding readers that former US President, Bill Clinton, has been called, “the first black president”, despite the obvious fact that he is not black. Mickens goes onto explain that the title had been applied to Clinton, not because of his many initiatives aimed at helping African-Americans, but because he had been pre-judged – like a Black person would have been – over the immoral incident with Monica Lewinsky.
Thus, according to Mickens, Pope Francis could be called the ‘first gay pope’, not because he has changed the Church’s teaching on homosexuality but, rather, because of his “style” in dealing with homosexuals. As Mickens says, ” … he has — in a real sense — changed everything in terms of attitude and ethos, just by his own personal approach to gay people.” (Emphasis added)
The author then goes on to remind readers that when Bergoglio made the rhetorical question, “Who am I to judge?”, he was speaking of the case of a gay cleric, contrasting the example of the ordained sodomite with that of a “gay lobby” which is said to be one of the factions present within the Vatican. That cleric, Monsignor Battista Ricca is a good example of Bergoglio’s policy of loving the sinner and, well, kind of tolerating the sin.
Mickens ends with the veiled suggestion that this gay-friendly pope may one day be succeeded by an openly gay one, while also referencing the alleged behaviour of at least a couple of twentieth-century popes:
The United States’ “first Black president” was eventually succeeded in the White House by a real African-American. The Church, on the other hand, has been led at times — even in relatively recent history — by popes who would surely be considered homosexuals by today’s understanding of the term. But none of them ever dared to say the things the “first gay pope” has been saying these past several years. He still has a way’s to go, but many LGBTQ+ Catholics are ready to accompany him on the journey.Robert Mickens
Now, I don’t know about you, but I would feel uncomfortable calling the pope “gay” – and I don’t even particularly like this pope. (Mickens is something of a fan – if not of Francis personally, then at least of his liberalism). Remember the fuss Paul VI made when he was accused of being a sodomite by a gay Freemason? He asked the entire Church of Italy for a day of prayer and reparation.
But there has been no such response from Bergoglio. Makes one wonder. Recall that he also didn’t personally refute claims that he doesn’t believe in hell or said that unrepentant atheists can go to heaven.
By the way, the kind of thing Mickens retweets and shares on his Twitter feed is shown below.
If I were Pope and were also a Catholic, I would be most offended if a liberal from La Croix wrote an article calling me gay. But that’s probably just the abundance of my heart speaking: ” … and a rigid man out of the rigid treasure bringeth forth that which is rigid….” (with apologies to St Luke)