Same-sex couples and families will be welcomed at the Catholic run World Meeting of Families to be held in Dublin next year.
The August event centred around the “importance of marriage and the family” is being run by Catholic bishops in Ireland, with Archbishop Diarmuid Martin overseeing its organisation.
The event’s website reveals a little more about what attendees can expect:
“Held every three years, this major international event brings together families from across the world to celebrate, pray and reflect upon the central importance of marriage and the family as the cornerstone of our lives, of society and of the Church.”
Recognising the fact that same-sex couples are now able to get married in Ireland, Dr Martin has recognised the support that LGBT+ couples and families can provide one another.
Pro LGBT+ Message
“While the Chruch upholds the ideal of marriage as a permanent commitment between a man and a woman, other unions exist which provide mutual support to the couple,” the program, entitled Amoris: Let’s talk Family! Let’s be Family!, reads.
Pope Francis encourages us never to exclude
“Pope Francis encourages us never to exclude but to accompany these couples also, with love, care and support.”
This message is accompanied by an image of two women (with their heads cropped out) embracing each other on page twenty-four of the program.
The Independent reports that Limerick Bishop Brendan Leahy extended an invitation to LGBT+ couples and families to attend the event, indicating that times are changing, and so too is family.
“We’ve had the referendum in favour of same-sex marriage and a lot of people voted in that referendum and all are equally welcome to join in this celebration of family,” Leahy said.
“We are living in changing times and family too is changing.”
“Everyone must be made feel welcome next year. We all want to build a good family network of support in Ireland at all levels.”
“It’s an international event but it will have a special meaning for us as Irish people because family means so much here,” he said.
The event, held once every three years, will take place over three days in late August 2018.
This church-sanctioned message of inclusivity is already drawing the ire of conservatives, reports the right-leaning LifeSiteNews.
Anthony Murphy, founder of the Lumen Fidei Institute and Catholic Voice newspaper, decrying the open and inclusive approach to the event and labelling same-sex attraction and relations as “anti-family”.
“Are homosexual acts sinful or not? Our Catholic faith teaches us that they are. They are among the most anti-family acts of all,” said Murphy.
“So what on earth are our Catholic leaders doing promoting homosexuality in the program that is supposed to help families prepare for the World Meeting of Families?”
Murphy also criticised the lack of direct mention around the issue of abortion in light of Ireland’s referendum on the issue next year.
“To give implicit approval of homosexuality, which the Church has always taught to be one of the four sins that cry to heaven for vengeance, while failing to decry abortion is nothing short of a dereliction of duty.”
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