Pope Francis to Catholics: Stop being so obsessed with gay marriage and abortion

The Pope admonishes his church for growing “obsessed” with abortion, gay marriage and contraception

Published September 19, 2013 4:05PM (EDT)

  (AP/Domenico Stinellis)
(AP/Domenico Stinellis)

In an interview with an Italian-language Jesuit journal, Pope Francis says the Catholic Church has grown "obsessed" with the issues of abortion, gay marriage and contraception. In an effort to redirect the church's focus, he has decided not to speak publicly about these issues, he adds.

As reported by the New York Times, the pope told La Civiltà Cattolica: “It is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time. The dogmatic and moral teachings of the church are not all equivalent. The church’s pastoral ministry cannot be obsessed with the transmission of a disjointed multitude of doctrines to be imposed insistently."

“We have to find a new balance,” he continued, “otherwise even the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards, losing the freshness and fragrance of the Gospel.”

But this does not mean that the pope's views on these issues -- or the Catholic Church's teachings -- are changing. The Catholic Church's positions against gay marriage, abortion and contraception are still “clear” to him as “a son of the church,” he says.


By Katie McDonough

Katie McDonough is Salon's politics writer, focusing on gender, sexuality and reproductive justice. Follow her on Twitter @kmcdonovgh or email her at kmcdonough@salon.com.

MORE FROM Katie McDonough

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Abortion Catholic Church Catholicism Gay Marriage Gay Rights Pope Francis