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
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
that he loves the gay community. He also recently endorsed a
campaign calling on Catholic
gay men and lesbians to live chaste lives.