The Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued a political statement on Monday. It says that Catholic clergy can bless unmarried and same-sex couples.
“This concession is a significant change of attitude for the church – but it is associated with certain conditions,” Deutche Welle writes on its website. First of all: “such a blessing should not be performed with any ecclesiastical rites giving the impression of marriage” and further: “the teaching regarding marriage does not change and the blessing does not imply consent to the union”.
The Catholic Church no longer recognizes these unions and does not consider them equal to marriage. Nevertheless, he allows the blessing of the priests, because he considers it a “pleasure to God”. But it should not “be granted for the use of established rituals that belong to a wedding.” People who receive the blessing, for example, must not be dressed like they are at a wedding.
The statement, according to the AP, explains the Vatican’s radical change in policy by saying that people seeking God’s love and mercy should not be subjected to “exhaustive moral analysis.”
The document, titled Fiducia Supplicans in Latin, was signed by Pope Francis and builds on a letter Francis sent to two conservative cardinals that was made public in October. Even then, the Pope indicated that Catholic priests could bless homosexual couples.