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Content about Benedict XVI

January 10, 2014

The Rev. Robert Nugent, who spent 30 years ministering to LGBTI Catholics before being stopped by the Vatican, has died aged 76 from lung cancer

Co-founder of groundbreaking US LGBTI Catholic group New Ways Ministry the Rev. Robert Nugent died of lung cancer 1 January aged 76.

Nugent, a member of the Salvatorian Catholic order, had spent 32 years ministering to LGBTI Catholics in an accepting way from 1977 until he was stopped in 1999 by the then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger who became Pope Benedict XVI six years later.

New Ways Ministry survived without him and he assisted in parish ministry at St. John the Baptist Church in New Freedom, Pennsylvania, until his retirement in summer of 2013.

December 17, 2013

Magazine calls the Catholic pointiff the 'single most influential person of 2013 on the lives of LGBT people'

The Advocate, the oldest LGBTI publication in the US, named Pope Francis as its Person of the Year on Monday (16 December).

The magazine placed a NoH8 campaign tattoo on the cheek of the head of the Catholic Church for its cover illustration along with the quote 'If someone is gay and seeks the Lord with good will, who am I to judge.'

Such sentiments are a dramatic reversal from the anti-gay rhetoric of his predecessor Pope Benedict XVI who had once written that homosexuality was 'intrinsically evil.'

July 29, 2013

Leader of the Catholic Church has stunned LGBT people around the world by saying he would not judge gay priests

Pope Francis has stunned LGBT people around the world by telling reporters he was not in a position to judge gay people today (29 July).

The leader of the Catholic Church has said he will not judge priests for their sexual orientation, making a stark contrast to his predecessors.

In an open and wide-ranging news conference as returns from his first foreign trip to Brazil, he said: 'If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?'

July 5, 2013

A major statement, co-authored by former Pope Benedict XVI and new Pope Francis pushes Vatican’s anti-gay message

Both living Popes, Francis and Benedict XVI, have come together to send an unprecedented message against gay marriage.

A new ‘encyclical’ issued by the Vatican today, contains their joint musings on the nature of faith and love. It says faith should serve the ‘common good’ but makes clear this doesn’t include gay and lesbian marriage.

The document, only signed by Francis but promoted by Benedict XVI who came out of retirement today to push it, says faith enlightens humanity ‘first and foremost’ by ‘the stable union of man and woman in marriage’.

June 14, 2013

Catholic Church head has met with Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby to discuss gay marriage

Pope Francis has surprised in gay marriage talks by proving he is a more diplomatic figure than his predecessors.

The leader of the Catholic Church deftly avoided speaking against gay rights while speaking to the head of the Anglican Church, the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.

Francis, the only pope in history to become leader when he was the cardinal of a country with same-sex marriage, said he wanted to work with Welby to promote family values ‘based on marriage’.

May 4, 2013

Cleric been told by the Vatican to leave the UK so as not to create further embarrassment for the Catholic Church

Friends of the disgraced Cardinal Keith O’Brien say he’s been ordered by the Vatican into exile and ditch his plans for retirement in Scotland.

The Herald commented that: ‘It is the clearest indication yet of the Vatican's unwillingness to let the matter drift’ of the Cardinal’s sexual assault on male priests when he run seminaries in the 1980s and during a drinks party in Rome.

April 22, 2013

Piero Marini, ex chamberlain of John Paul II and Benedict XVI, said that 'gay couples need civil unions, but we can not call them "marriage"'

Archbishop Piero Marini, the chamberlain to former Pope Benedict, has said the Catholic Church is changing and called for civil unions for gay couples.

Marini, who was a senior official for the conservative Benedict, recognized ‘same-sex couples need civil rights and civil unions. But we can not call them “marriage”’.

Speaking at a bishops’ meeting in Costa Rica, Central America, Marini commented also on the new Pope, Francis: ‘Now we can breathe fresh air, the church is changing.’

March 14, 2013

Pope Francis can learn a lot from GSN’s resident gay dad and his two 10-year-old sons, otherwise he’ll be on a long Timeout

A few months ago, I had pondered on what the now retired Pope Benedict XVI might observe and learn on a trip with my family to Disneyland. He had just made some rude and inaccurate observations about families like mine, and I felt the reality, as demonstrated by tens of thousands of clamoring families in the ‘happiest place on earth’ might give him something to think about.

Instead, he resigned.

March 13, 2013

GLAAD: 'We hope this Pope will trade in his red shoes for a pair of sandals and spend a lot less time condemning'

The election today (13 March) of Pope Francis as the leader of the Roman Catholic Church has led LGBT groups to call for a Pope different from his anti-gay predecessor Benedict XVI.

'For decades the Catholic hierarchy has been in need of desperate reform,' said Herndon Graddick (pictured), president of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation.

March 13, 2013

Argentina's Jorge Mario Bergoglio was chosen by the conclave of cardinals as the next leader of the Roman Catholic Church

Pope Francis was elected as the leader of the Roman Catholic Church today (13 March).

Argentinian Jorge Mario Bergoglio, 76, was chosen by the conclave of 115 cardinals as a successor to Benedict XVI.

Tens of thousands of faithful Catholics broke into cheers as the white smoke indicated the new pontiff had obtained the required two thirds majority, which happened in the fifth round of voting over two days.

Francis is still a conservative choice, but has taught the ‘importance of respecting gay individuals’.

March 8, 2013

As the cardinals start to gather for the conclave to elect the next pope, we give a run-down of the top popefuls and find a bleak picture on LGBT issues

As the red-robed cardinals gather in their conclave to choose the next pope, it is clear homosexuality will be a key issue facing the future head of the Catholic church.

Pope Benedict XVI’s reign was marked not just by the biggest child sex abuse scandal in the history of the world but also by increasing challenges to the church’s traditional stance on LGBT issues.

Benedict opposed homosexuality and gay marriage, and in January 2013 stated:

March 1, 2013

ProGay Philippines says that new pope should 'start reviewing old ideas that alienate people'

Filipino LGBT rights group ProGay Philippines has spoken about its hopes for the new Pope.

The group welcomed the sudden resignation of Pope Benedict XVI saying the new Pope presents the possibility for the Catholic church to 'modify its anti-gay and anti-women doctrines'.

'Because our country is 80 per cent Roman Catholic, most of government policies have been heavily influenced by bishops, which made it so stifling for the lives of millions of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender citizens,' said Jomar Amores, spokesperson for ProGay Philippines.

March 1, 2013

After his resignation, Benedict XVI is to live with his much younger personal secretary Georg Gänswein

Pope Benedict XVI may have officially resigned, but he will not give up his alleged secret boyfriend.

Personal secretary Archbishop Georg Gänswein, dubbed ‘Gorgeous Georg’, will continue to be the former leader of the Roman Catholic Church’s personal secretary.

Since 2005, the two have had breakfast, lunch, dinner together every day, but not anymore as Gänswein will now be serving both pontiffs.

He will live with Benedict at the monastery inside the Vatican, and keeping his day job as prefect of the new pope’s household.

February 28, 2013

After Pope Benedict XVI officially resigns, Italy's Tarcisio Bertone will take over until the conclave of cardinals reach a decision on a new leader

As Pope Benedict XVI finishes his final hours as the leader of the Roman Catholic Church, the world is looking to his temporary replacement.

Today (28 February), the Catholic Church will enter into a period known as ‘Sede Vacante’ (vacant See), during which a senior cardinal takes over interim powers until a new pope is elected.

Italy’s Tarciso Bertone, referred to as the camerlengo, in the past has blamed the church pedophilia on the ‘homosexual infiltration’ of the Catholic priesthood.

February 28, 2013

The leader of the Roman Catholic Church, who called gay people a 'defection of human nature', bids farewell

Pope Benedict XVI, who has spent the majority of his career attacking gay people, is to officially resign today (28 February).

He has left the Vatican for the final time as leader of the Catholic Church, where he will spend two months in Castel Gandolfo – the Pope’s summer residence.

In his final farewell, he said: ‘With all my heart and love and my prayers, I would like to work for the good of the Church and humanity.

‘I feel your support. Let's go on together for the Church and the good of the world.’

February 27, 2013

Benedict XVI appoints Archbishop of Glasgow Philip Tartaglia to the position, who has previously connected premature deaths to homosexuality

Pope Benedict XVI has appointed a temporary successor to the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh.

Archbishop of Glasgow Reverend Philip Tartaglia will govern the vacant diocese until a permanent appointment is made.

It follows Cardinal Keith O’Brien, who has previously compared gay marriage to slavery, resigned after allegations he initiated inappropriate acts with his male priests.

February 25, 2013

Leading opponent of same-sex marriage in Scotland, Keith O’Brien has resigned after claims he initiated ‘inappropriate behavior’ with priests

Britian’s most senior Catholic and a leading opponent of gay and lesbian marriage, Keith O’Brien, has quit after claims he initiated ‘inappropriate acts’ with his priests.

The Vatican is going to investigate the claims.

Four priests, one who has now left the church, have accused the archbishop of ‘inappropriate behavior’ over 30 years.

February 24, 2013

Four priests say Britain’s leading Catholoic homophobe made ‘inappropriate’ advances and contact, one claims a ‘relationship’. O’Brien disputes accusations

Four priests, one who has now left the church, have accused Scotland’s Cardinal Keith O’Brien of ‘inappropriate behavior’ over 30 years.

The Cardinal’s spokesman has said their claims are contested. He is apparently taking legal advice.

O’Brien has previously compared gay marriage to slavery, claiming it is a ‘violation of human rights’ and slammed its planned introduction by the Scottish and parliament and Westminster as ‘madness’.

According to The Observer, which broke the story, the four are all based in the diocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh.

February 21, 2013

La Repubblica claim in an internal report, commissioned by Benedict XVI, the pope is leaving his post over the 'gay lobby'

An Italian newspaper is blaming the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI on the ‘gay influence’ within the Vatican.

Referring to an internal report prepared by three senior cardinals, La Repubblica claims there was an ‘inappropriate influence’ by gay priests in internal Holy See affairs.

Filed by cardinals Julian Herranz, Josef Tomko and Salvatore De Giorgi, it was commissioned by Benedict himself.

The newspaper suggests when Pope Benedict saw the report back in December, it hardened his resolve to quit as the leader of the Roman Catholic Church.

February 20, 2013

Cardinal Peter Turkson, one of the top contenders to take over for Pope Benedict XVI, has said gay people are to blame for child sex abuses

The African cardinal widely tipped to be the next pope has blamed the Catholic Church’s pedophilia on gay priests.

Cardinal Peter Turkson, from Ghana, said the sex abuses would never happen in Africa because the culture is against homosexuality.

Speaking to CNN, the 64-year-old said: ‘African traditional systems kind of protect or have protected its population against the tendency.

February 14, 2013

The bolt of lightning that hit St Peter’s Basilica means it’s time to rid ourselves of a Pope who thinks gays are ‘evil’ and create an inclusive church

Just hours after Pope Benedict XVI announced his unexpected resignation, a bolt of lightning struck St Peter’s Basilica.

Many say it's unequivocally a sign from God.

If so, I'm hoping it's an Amen moment signaling the end of an oppressive era of LGBTQ bashing as the church now moves forward.

February 13, 2013

Openly bi Scottish actor says if the Catholic Church wants to rebrand itself, it should go with a woman, gay, black or Hispanic leader instead of a homophobe

Scottish bisexual actor Alan Cumming has been thinking about who he wants to be the next pope.

Pope Benedict XVI shocked the world on Monday (11 February) when he announced his resignation, the first to do so in 600 years.

February 13, 2013

FEMEN protest group bare breasts and shout 'no homophobe' and 'bye bye Benedict' in Notre Dame cathedral in Paris

Eight women bared their breasts in Paris's Notre Dame cathedral yesterday to celebrate the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI.

The women from feminist protest group FEMEN shouted 'no more homophobe', 'Pope no more' and 'bye bye Benedict' while ringing bells near the alter in the iconic cathedral, with slogans painted on their bodies.

February 12, 2013

Place your bets on who will be the next Pope. But more important than the winner is the direction they will take the church, including on LGBT issues

Put not your faith in princes nor, if you are looking for anything more than pure flutter on the Papal handicap, bookmakers. For with the starting pistol fired on next month’s papal competition a number of online bookies are already quoting odds on the most ‘papabile’ of a long field of cardinals and also-rans.