The XX Factor

Popes Say the Darndest Things: Francis’ Worst Hits

Say what, again?

Photo by Servizio Fotografico L’Osservatore Romano via Getty Images

Some of you, while perhaps intuiting that the new Pope Francis may not be the staunchest advocate for the rights of women and members of the LGBT community, may nevertheless be seeking some sort of concrete evidence for your suspicion. Well, you’re in luck, because we have assembled a collection of media snippets from the past several years referencing the pope on such hot button issues as gay marriage and abortion. Ecce:


“The archbishop of Buenos Aires, Jorge Bergoglio, has publicly lashed out at the city’s mayor, Mauricio Macri, who decided not to lodge an appeal against the judge’s decision to grant the marriage licence [to a gay couple]. An appeal by the city government against the judge’s ruling would, in effect, have overturned the judge’s decision and stopped the licence being granted. Bergoglio said that, in failing to act, Macri had ‘gravely failed’ at his task of governing.”


—From an Observer article by Annie Kelly, November 29, 2009

“The war of words continued on Tuesday as church leaders staged large protests around the country against the proposed law [allowing gay marriage in Argentina]. On Sunday, Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, the archbishop of Buenos Aires, had declared it a ‘destructive attack on God’s plan.’”

—From a New York Times article by Alexei Barrionuevo, July 13, 2010

“‘We shouldn’t be naive: this isn’t just a political struggle, it’s a strategy to destroy God’s plan,’ Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, the head of the Church in Argentina, said in urging lawmakers to reject [Argentina’s gay marriage] bill.”

—From a Reuters story by Eduardo Garcia, July 21, 2010



“Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio called gay marriage in Argentina a loss for everyone, saying ‘children need to have the right to be raised and educated by a father and a mother.’”

—From a Christian Science Monitor article by Sara Miller Llana, July 15, 2010

“At stake are the lives of many children who will be discriminated against in advance, and deprived of their human development given by a father and a mother and willed by God. At stake is the total rejection of God’s law engraved in our hearts.”


—Bergoglio, quoted in a National Catholic Register article by Edward Pentin, July 8, 2010


“In a speech given to a gathering of priests and laity on October 2nd, the cardinal pointed out that people say that ‘we aren’t in agreement with the death penalty,’ but ‘in Argentina we have the death penalty. A child conceived by the rape of a mentally ill or retarded woman can be condemned to death.’”

—From a story by Matthew Cullinan Hoffman, October 5, 2007

“The text [of a joint statement of the bishops of Latin America] states in paragraph 436 that ‘we should commit ourselves to eucharistic coherence, that is, we should be conscious that people cannot receive holy communion and at the same time act or speak against the commandments, in particular when abortion, euthanasia, and other serious crimes against life and family are facilitated. This responsibility applies particularly to legislators, governors, and health professionals.’”