Pope Francis addressed discrimination against the LGBT community, his own health and future plans, and the passing of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, among other things, in a wide-ranging interview with The Associated Press published Wednesday.
We are all children of God, and God loves us as we are.” Francis reiterated, however, church teaching that engaging in homosexual activity is sinful.”It’s a sin,” Francis said, adding: “Let’s make the distinction first between sin and crime.” The pope also clarified that discriminating against others was also sinful, saying: “It’s also a sin to lack charity with one another.
Francis said the church “must” work to get unjust laws abolished around the world.
Same-sex sexual acts are considered crimes in some 67 countries, mostly in Africa and the Middle East, according to the Human Dignity Trust organization. In 11 of those countries, punishment can include the death penalty.
The Catholic Church teaching says that gay people must be welcomed into the church and treated with respect and kindness, despite the fact that homosexual acts are considered “intrinsically disordered.”