Pope Francis met Monday with Fr. James Martin, SJ, in a private audience in the apostolic palace inside the Vatican.
Martin said on Twitter Sept. 30, that his meeting with Pope Francis lasted 30 minutes, and that he shared with him “the joys and hopes, and the griefs and anxieties, of LGBT Catholics and LGBT people worldwide.”
Martin added that he “was so grateful to meet with this wonderful pastor.” The audience was private except for the presence of a papal interpreter.
In another tweet, Martin said the meeting was one of the highlights of his life. “I felt encouraged, consoled and inspired by the Holy Father today. And his time with me, in the middle of a busy day and a busy life, seems a clear sign of his deep pastoral care for LGBT Catholics and LGBT people worldwide.”
Martin is the author of “Building a Bridge: How the Catholic Church and the LGBT Community Can Enter into a Relationship of Respect, Compassion, and Sensitivity,” and speaks frequently on issues pertaining to homosexuality and Catholicism.
Earlier this month, Archbishop Charles Chaput of Philadelphia urged caution about Martin’s message after the priest spoke at a Philadelphia university.
“Father Martin has sought in a dedicated way to accompany and support people with same-sex attraction and gender dysphoria. Many of his efforts have been laudable, and we need to join him in stressing the dignity of persons in such situations,” Archbishop Charles Chaput wrote in a Sept. 19 column published on his archdiocesan website.
“At the same time, a pattern of ambiguity in his teachings tends to undermine his stated aims, alienating people from the very support they need for authentic human flourishing. Due to the confusion caused by his statements and activities regarding same-sex related (LGBT) issues, I find it necessary to emphasize that Father Martin does not speak with authority on behalf of the Church, and to caution the faithful about some of his claims,” Chaput added.
Full story at Catholic News Agency.