Pope Francis said on Monday government officials have a “human right” to refuse to discharge a duty, such as issuing marriage licenses to homosexuals, if they feel it violates their conscience.
Speaking to reporters as he returned home from a 10-day trip to the United States and Cuba, Francis also repeated his condemnation of priests who had sexually abused children, saying the victims had been “crushed by evil.”
Although the Argentine-born pontiff delved into some of the United States’ thorniest political debates during his visit, he never specifically referred to a controversy over same-sex marriages, which the Church firmly opposes.
On the flight back to Rome, he was asked if he supported individuals, including government officials, who refuse to abide by some laws, such as issuing marriage licenses to gays.
“Conscientious objection must enter into every juridical structure because it is a right,” Francis said.
Earlier this month a city official in the U.S. state of Kentucky, Kim Davis, went to jail because she refused to issue a marriage license to a gay couple following a Supreme Court decision to make homosexual marriage legal.
Davis’s case has taken on national significance in the 2016 presidential campaign, with one Republican contender, Mike Huckabee, holding rallies in favor of Davis, a Apostolic Christian, who has since joined the Republican party.
“I can’t have in mind all cases that can exist about conscientious objection but, yes, I can say that conscientious objection is a right that is a part of every human right,” he said, speaking in Italian.
“And if someone does not allow others to be a conscientious objector, he denies a right,” he added.
Francis said conscientious objection had to be respected in legal structures. “Otherwise we would end up in a situation where we select what is a right, saying: ‘This right has merit, this one does not.'”
Read more: Huffington Post
- Watch: Chuck Schumer Hammered on Senate Floor for Lying About Trump Being Under Investigation
- Millions Of Gun Owners About To Be Criminals Starting July 1st
- Is This How Otto Warmbier Was Put In A Comma? Leaked Footage Shows North Korean Officials Beating A Woman Senseless For…
- Smug Thug Smirking While Widow Testifies During Murder Trial is Destroyed by Judge [Watch]
- Student Going to Jail for Registering Dead People as Democratic Voters
- London Women Targeted for Continuous Acid Attacks
- BREAKING: Republicans Delay Health Care Vote, Not Enough…
- California’s ‘Assault Weapons’ Rule Rejected
- John McCain Tight Lipped on His Foundation After Being Busted for Taking Foreign Money from Questionable Sources
- Snowflake Alert! University Now Has ‘Emotional Risk’ Assessment For Student Events
- Clinton Foundation Busted for Taking $1MIL from Qatar and ‘Forgetting’ to Tell Gov. About It
- ISIS Forces Sex Slave to EAT Her 1yr-Old Son
- On The 154th Anniversary Of Gettysburg, Leftists Are Promising To ‘Desecrate Graves’
- Bill Nye Writer Willing To Accept Deaths of “Old Ass Conservative White Men” If It Leads To Gun Control
- WaPo Publishes Fact-less Story Thomas Jefferson ‘Celebrated Ramadan’
- CNN Employees Resign After Fake News Scandal
- Dear Gun Grabbers: This Video Proves Why Homeowners Need Guns
- Black Trump Supporter Demolishes Maxine Waters — “You Have Destroyed the Black Community!”