Home   |  About Us   |  Contacts   |  Products    
 News Items:
 News Briefs
 Word To Life
 More News:
 Special Sections:
 2007 in review
 Inside the Curia
 2006 in review
 Vatican II at 40
 John Paul II
 Other Items:
 Client Area
 Did You Know...

 The whole CNS
 public Web site
 headlines, briefs
 stories, etc,
 represents less
 than one percent
 of the daily news

 Get all the news!

 If you would like
 more information
 about the
 Catholic News
 Service daily
 news report,
 please contact
 CNS at one of
 the following:
 (202) 541-3250


 This material
 may not
 be published,
 rewritten or
 (c) 2006
 Catholic News
 Conference of
 Catholic Bishops.

 CNS Story:

HOMOSEXUALITY-LOMBARDI Dec-11-2008 (320 words) xxxi

Church opposes considering homosexuality a crime, spokesman says

By John Thavis
Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A Vatican spokesman said the Catholic Church is clearly against considering homosexuality a crime, but is wary of international declarations that use the issue to promote a political agenda based on sexual orientation.

The spokesman, Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, made the comment Dec. 11 in response to questions at a Vatican press conference.

In early December, a leading Vatican diplomat drew criticism from gay-rights groups when he said the Vatican opposed a proposed U.N. declaration to endorse the universal decriminalization of homosexuality.

The diplomat, Archbishop Celestino Migliore, the Vatican's apostolic nuncio to the United Nations, said such a declaration might be used to put pressure on or discriminate against countries that do not recognize same-sex marriage.

Father Lombardi, in his latest comments to reporters, said the Vatican was not conducting a battle against the United Nations or weakening its opposition to discrimination against homosexuals, which is clearly stated in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

"There is no question that the church is contrary to legislation that criminalizes homosexuality," Father Lombardi said.

The church's position stems from its respect for the rights and dignity of every person, and explicitly excludes "any unjust discrimination on the basis of homosexuality," Father Lombardi said.

The spokesman noted that Archbishop Migliore's comments were made in response to a question about a draft declaration that had yet to be presented at the United Nations or in any public forum.

He said Archbishop Migliore's point was that it's one thing to argue against discrimination and criminalization regarding homosexuality, but another to contend that anyone who makes a distinction based on sexual orientation is considered an adversary of human rights.

Specifically, Archbishop Migliore expressed the fear that the draft declaration could lead to a situation in which "states that do not recognize same-sex unions as 'marriage' will be pilloried and put under pressure" to do so.


Copyright (c) 2008 Catholic News Service/USCCB. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed.
CNS · 3211 Fourth St NE · Washington DC 20017 · 202.541.3250