Vatican Dramatically Intervenes to Oppose ‘Homophobia’ Law in Italy A message to liberal clerics around the world about the limits of appeasing the secular state.- Fr James Martin OOPS!

Posted on June 30, 2021


In 1929, then Pope Pius XI signed the Lateran Treaty with then leader of Italy, Benito Mussolini. The treaty formally established relations between Italy and the Vatican, after the Masonic foundations of the State had led to an anti clericalism for much of the previous century.

One of the caveats in the bill, a concordat between two sovereign states, was that the Catholic Church had certain freedoms to operate within Italy, especially with regard to speech and thought. as aligned with its beliefs.

A new proposal from the Italian government, part of which would create a ‘Day against Homophobia’, was interpreted by the Vatican as being a potential transgression of this freedom. The reason for their worry comes down to their suspicions that the bill would be used to impinge upon some of the basic teachings of the Catholic faith, potentially criminalising traditional aspects of the catechism.

Monsignor Paul Richard Gallagher, Secretary for Relations with the States , sent a message this past week expressing the Vatican’s concerns. These concerns delve far deeper than merely objecting to being called ‘Homophobic’, the so called Zan Bill would also criminalise perceived slights against persons based upon ‘gender identity’.

Italian politicians Matteo Salvini and Silvio Berlusconi have offered revisions to the bill, with Left Wing politician Enrico Letta stating that he is willing to ‘dialogue’ with the church, offering assurances that they would not be prosecuted for stating the church’s objections to the state’s definitions of gender and sexual orientation.

The Holy See has never objected to a law in this manner in Italy, even though it is entitled to do so under the Lateran Treaty’s agreement terms. Such a dramatic step tells you that they are worried about what this law will mean for Catholics, particularly in schools.

It is also significant as it has occurred with the blessing of Pope Francis, undoubtedly sending a powerful message to liberal clerics around the world about the limits of appeasing the secular state.

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