CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Pope Francis expressed support for civil unions for same-sex couples in a documentary that will be released in Rome this week.
Barton Bailey, the PRIDE Center Director at the Coastal Bend Wellness Center, reacted to the Pope’s comments.
"I think anybody of leadership that recognizes we are all one people, and we all need to have equal access and equitable service and be treated equally, that is something we should encourage and support," Bailey said. "I think that if the Catholic Church and the Pope come out in support of equal treatment for the LGBTQ community, I think that's great."
Pope Francis expressed support for civil unions as an alternative to same-sex marriage while serving as Archbishop in Buenos Aires. However, this is the first time he has shared his support on the issue since becoming the head of the Catholic Church.
"Anytime the Pope or the head of any institution makes a public statement about something that's been talked about for years, of course, there's going to be the opportunity for change. So I hope that will change for the positive for LGBT rights in the Catholic Church,” Bailey said. "The Catholic Church is one of the biggest, if not the biggest, religious institution in South Texas, so of course that's going to cause all the other denominations and churches to talk about this.”
The Diocese of Corpus Christi released the following statement.
The PRIDE Center works with religious and non-religious organizations in the area on ways to be inclusive to LGBTQ+ persons. Bailey can be reached at the Coastal Bend Wellness Center at 361-814-2100.