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Letter from Rome: John Paul II's angry outburst at World Pride 2000

The current pope's approach to the LGBTQ+ community is markedly different from his sainted Polish predecessor

Letter from Rome: John Paul II's angry outburst at World Pride 2000

Placards are raised during the Pride Parade for LBGTQ rights in Rome on June 26. (Photo: AFP)

The Vatican has not changed one iota of its formal teaching on the immorality of homosexual acts.

But the bishop of Rome's attitude toward gays and lesbians has taken a 180-degree turn since the election of Pope Francis in 2013.

With just a few words — "Who am I to judge?" — the first pope to be born in the New World added another verse to Born This Way, the 2011 hit single by Lady Gaga.

And since Francis made that now-famous remark, doctrinal hardliners within the Church and other social conservatives (and bigots) have raged against his warm embrace of "intrinsically disordered" persons, as the Vatican describes those of us who are not heterosexuals.

The Argentine pope angered his critics again recently when it was revealed that he had written to James Martin to affirm the American Jesuit in his much-criticized ministry to the LGBTQ+ community.

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