The Irish vote to legalize gay marriage has been slammed by the Vatican’s secretary of state as a “defeat for humanity.”
When Ireland became the world’s first country to approve same-sex marriage by national vote with a resounding “yes,” it was likened by some commentators as a social revolution and celebrated across the world as a resounding vote for equality. However, certain elements in the Catholic Church beg to differ.
The Vatican’s secretary of state was so offended by a predominantly Catholic country voting 62 percent in favor of gay marriage that he has called it a “defeat for humanity.”
The Independent reports that Cardinal Pietro Parolin was deeply saddened by the result of the vote to legalize gay marriage and voiced his opinions to Italian news agency ANSA.
“I think that you cannot just talk of a defeat for Christian principles, but of a defeat for humanity. The family remains at the centre and we have to do everything to defend it and promote it.”
Cardinal Parolin’s response was by no means typical of other senior Catholic clerics. The archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin, described the Irish vote in favor of gay marriage as a “reality check” for the Catholic church on how it has “drifted completely away from young people.”
“I appreciate how gay and lesbian men and women feel on this day. That they feel this is something that is enriching the way they live. I think it is a social revolution.”
The National Post reports that the moral authority of the Catholic Church in Ireland has been rocked in recent years by the widespread sex abuse scandals and a general secularisation of society.
Pope Francis has not yet responded to Ireland’s vote in favor of gay marriage, but in 2013, the pope appeared to signify a shift in the Catholic’s attitude towards gay marriage.
He told reporters, “If someone is gay and is looking for the lord, who am I to judge him?”
Yet after Cardinal Parolin’s damming response to Ireland’s vote for gay marriage, critics have suggested that the Vatican is still very much mired in the past when it comes to its views on gay marriage.
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