The Vatican has released its working paper for October’s Synod on Marriage and the Family, and while the sections on gay and lesbian issues are either neutral or negative, other parts of the document provide some reason for hope.
Called an Instrumentum Laboris, the document has so far only been released in Italian. From translations quoted news sources, I’ve been able to piece together some of what the document has to say in paragraphs 130-132 which deal with lesbian and gay people. [My own unofficial translation of these three paragraphs, thanks primarily to GoogleTranslate, follows my signature at the end of this post; you can read the official Italian version by clicking here.]
The National Catholic Reporter provided the following translation of parts of that section:
“The document contains a short, three-paragraph section on ministering to gay people, ‘Pastoral attention to persons with homosexual tendencies.’
” ‘Every person, independently of their sexual tendencies, is respected in their dignity and should be received with sensibility and delicateness, both in the church and in society,’ the document states.
” ‘It would be desirable that diocesan pastoral projects reserve a specific attention to the accompanying of families with persons of homosexual tendencies, and of the persons themselves,’ it continues.”
“It is totally unacceptable that the Pastors of the Church suffer pressure in this matter [i.e, concerning legal recognition of same-gender relationships] and that international organizations connect financial aid to poor countries with the introduction of laws that establish the ‘marriage’ between people of the same sex.”
“A style of communication open to dialogue and free from prejudice is necessary particularly with regard of those Catholics that, in area of marriage and family, do not live, or are unable to live, in full accordance with the teachings of the church.”