New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan has described remarks Pope Francis reportedly made to a gay man as “beautiful” and in need of clarification.

Juan Carlos Cruz, a victim of sexual abuse by Father Fernando Karadima, told Spain's El Pais that during a private meeting with the pope in Rome, the pontiff told him that God made him “like this” and loves him.

“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.”

Appearing Tuesday on Sirius XM's The Catholic Channel, Cardinal Dolan said of God loving a gay man that “Jesus would have said that, and so would I.”

“While any sexual expression outside of a man and woman in marriage is contrary to God's purpose, so is not treating anyone, including a gay person, with anything less than dignity and respect.”

“What he says is beautiful, don't you think?” Dolan rhetorically asked.

When asked about Pope Francis reportedly saying that God made the man gay, Dolan demurred.

“Is it nature or nurture?... I don't think the Holy Father would feel competent to speak on that,” Dolan said. The pope's remarks were “third hand. What the pope said to him, he said to the press, so one would want to get a clarification.”

“[L]et's find out exactly what the Holy Father said,” he added.

Dolan, who delivered the opening prayer, or invocation, at President Donald Trump's inauguration, strongly opposed a marriage equality bill in New York that eventually became law, calling same-sex marriage “Orwellian social engineering.” He later apologized, saying that he loves the gay community. He also recently endorsed a campaign calling on Catholic gay men and lesbians to live chaste lives.