Quest welcomes Pope Francis’ very clear statement that laws criminalising LGBT+ people are ‘unjust’, and his reminder that “We are all children of God, and God loves us as we are and for the strength that each of us fights for our dignity”. He called Bishops who support criminalisation to a process of conversion.
We also welcome and endorse the parallel statements made by our sibling organisations NewWays Ministry and the LGBT+ Catholics Westminster Pastoral Council.
Gerard Swan, Chair to Quest, commented: “Quest will be 50 years old this year: that’s half a century of ministry to the marginalised whilst also advocating for change in attitudes within our Church. So it is heart-warming to have a Pope walking alongside us [all], whoever we are, however we present, just as we are told Christ did. In some ways Pope Francis seems simply to be aligning himself with the Gospel message as well as fundamental Catholic teachings, demonstrating how we can do the same. The challenge for those who struggle to accept that God made us ‘just as we are’ will be to spend time in community with LGBT+ people rather than holding onto mythologies about us that allow them to judge harshly, legislate unfairly and distance themselves from a group of people Christ calls them to love unconditionally.”
Added 02/02/23. For a helpful discussion about Pope Francis’ remarks and clarification about what he actually said and how it was mis-translated see James Alison’s article published here.