Self-proclaimed ‘theocratic fascist’ Matt Walsh appears to be unhappy that the Pope isn’t as transphobic as him.
The far-right Daily Wire pundit shocked absolutely no one by taking issue with Pope Francis’ recent declaration that transgender Catholics could still be baptised and act as godparents or witnesses to marriage.
“Unrepentant mortal sin cannot be included itself, you have to repent of that,” Walsh said of his belief in accepting transgender Catholics. “You have to face it, repent of it.”
Pope Francis made the declaration in response to a request for clarity from the Vatican and said that adults who identify as trans may partake in Catholic practices including witnessing marriage, acting as godparents, or being baptised.
He wrote that there was “nothing in current universal canonical legislation” that prohibited transgender or any LGBTQ+ person from serving as a witness at a Catholic marriage.
He added that trans people could be godparents under “certain conditions” and “pastoral prudence”, which he said is required to avoid the “danger of scandal” or confusion among Catholics.
LGBTQ+ organisations celebrated the statement, with GLAAD CEO Sarah Kate Ellis saying it sent an “unequivocal message” to leaders around the world that the persecution and exclusion of transgender people is unjust.
Matt Walsh thinks transphobia has always been a Catholic teaching
Anti-trans pundit Walsh, however, responded by claiming that the supreme pontiff and head of the worldwide Catholic Church is merely ignorant of scripture by comparing gender dysphoria to sin.
Aside from the fact that trans and non-binary people do not need gender dysphoria to identify as trans, there is no official policy on transgender individuals in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, according to the Human Rights Campaign.
Doctrinal teachings do equate birth anatomy with gender, but this is not the same as equating it with sin.
Despite this, Walsh claimed that Catholic teachings demanded trans people “change your ways” and implied that Pope Francis was unaware of this.
“If you’re not gonna do any of those things then you’ve chosen your sin over the truth and you’ve certainly chosen it over the Church,” he said. “This has always been the teaching.”
It has not always been the teaching, though several Catholic groups have used religion as a way to spread anti-LGBTQ+ misinformation.
Walsh himself has been barred from several Catholic Church events due to his inflammatory views over the past few years.
In 2021, an anti-abortion event featuring Walsh and organised by conservative youth organisation the Young America’s Foundation was abruptly cancelled by the Missouri Catholic Church which was set to host the talk.
Officials at St. Francis Xavier College Church cited several of Walsh’s public statements against the LGBTQ+ community as reason for the cancellation, saying he holds positions “contrary to the values of our Catholic faith”.
“His provocative positions on immigration, on communities of colour, on Muslims, and on members of the LGBTQ+ community seem designed to stir anger and resentment, rather than encourage thoughtful dialogue,” church officials said.
“His statements are in contradiction to Jesus’ great commandment to love God and love our neighbour.”
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