In the introduction to “Amoris Laetitia”, Pope Francis warns against reading it too quickly. Indeed, there are dangers in rushing to a quick assessment – but unfortunately, it was inevitable that the first responses to be published, would be based on relatively quick judgements. There simply was not time for close reading and full reflection, between the first press look becoming available on-line at 6 on Thursday evening, and noon on Friday, when the text was officially published. I suspect that some of those early responses have suffered, from an insufficiently close reading.
For myself, I have found that the more I think about the text, the more I look closely at the words, and the more I read and reflect on how others have responded – the more optimistic I become that for all the superficial disappointments that others have pointed out, hidden beneath the surface are many reasons for lesbian and gay Catholics to celebrate. (I’m a little less sure though, about trans or intersex folk, so restrict myself here to “LGBQ” not LGBTQI).
In their considered response, which I know was the outcome of lengthy deliberation by a large team of people, the Global Network of Rainbow Catholics observe that Amoris Laetitia raises more questions than answers. Some of these questions are of critical importance, and it may be possible with close reading, to deduce Francis’ own answers to them, even if they are not directly spelled out. If may guesses are sound, then they represent good news for LGBQ Catholics – and if I am wrong, they still offer good material for us to use in countering our critics, and important questions we can (and should) be putting to our bishops and pastors, as we nudge them on the path to full lgbt inclusion in the Catholic Church.
Among those questions are:
- The Joy of (LGBT) Family
- Amoris Laetitia : A Closer Look
- Amoris Laetitiae: Take Up the Key, and Open the Door?
- African Theologian Expects LGBT Welcome, Inclusion to Follow from “Amoris Laetitia”
- “The Joy of Love”: Also for Lesbian and Gay Catholics
- Amoris Laetitia – Goodbye to “Objectively Disordered”?
- Francis Proposes Better Psychosexual Training for Priests
- Pope Francis’ Blistering Attack on Catholic Marriage Discourse.