Pope Francis Apologizes for Using Offensive Term Toward Gay People in Private Meeting

Credit: Pope Francis/Instagram

Pope Francis, 87, issued an apology following reports suggesting he used a derogatory term toward gay people during a private meeting in Rome recently. The alleged comments emerged from a discussion with members of the Italian bishops’ conference regarding the acceptance of gay men into the priesthood.

During the meeting, Francis reportedly expressed his objection to the admission of gay men to Catholic seminaries, citing concerns about the increasing number of gay individuals entering the priesthood. Italian news outlets, including Dagospia, La Repubblica, Corriere della Sera, and Adnkronos, reported on the incident, leaving attendees shocked and confused.

The pontiff allegedly used the term “frociaggine” in Italian, a derogatory term for gay people, according to multiple sources. He also reportedly warned about the risk of gay individuals leading a double life if allowed to train for the priesthood, as reported by The Times.

In response to the controversy, Director of the Holy See Press Office Matteo Bruni emphasized the Pope's inclusive stance, stating, “There is room for everyone in the Church! No one is useless, no one is superfluous, there is room for everyone." Bruni clarified that Pope Francis never intended to offend or express himself in homophobic terms, extending apologies to those who felt offended by the reported use of the term.

The incident follows closely on the heels of Pope Francis' recent clarification regarding his position on blessing same-sex couples. Despite expressing openness to such blessings in a 60 Minutes special aired on May 19, the alleged use of a derogatory term has sparked renewed discussion on the Church's stance towards the LGBTQ+ community.

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