A gay man has said that Pope Francis told him that God made him “like this” and loves him.

Juan Carlos Cruz spoke privately with the pope two weeks ago.

Cruz was sexually abused by Father Fernando Karadima, now 87. The Vatican found the Chilean Roman Catholic priest guilty of sexually abusing minors in 2011. In coming forward, Cruz was depicted as a pervert by some bishops in Chile. They also accused Cruz of fabricating his story.

Speaking with Spain's El Pais, Cruz said that in talking with the pope about the abuse, the pontiff told him that God loves him as he is.

“He told me, 'Juan Carlos, that you are gay does not matter,” Cruz said. “God made you like this and loves you like this and I don't care. The pope loves you like this. You have to be happy with who you are.”

In 2013, Pope Francis reportedly said that he's not in a position to judge gay priests.

“If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge? Francis rhetorically asked reporters.

The Vatican has not commented on the pope's latest remarks.