Equality Illinois reacts to Pope Francis interview

Thu. September 19, 2013 3:46 PM

Chicago, IL - Equality Illinois, the state's oldest and largest organization fighting for the civil rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Illinoisans, today called on Illinois Catholic leaders to heed the words and tone being set by Pope Francis.

"The Pope has offered opened arms instead of the back of the hand to gay and lesbian Catholics, and he's also offered a new prescription to Catholic bishops and faithful for considering inclusion of LGBT people," said Bernard Cherkasov, CEO of Equality Illinois. 

"Just weeks ago, the Pope admonished his followers not to ostracize or marginalize gay people, and today he took the next step in saying that the Roman Catholic hierarchy should not be 'obsessed' with opposition to LGBT people. His insistence on respect and inclusiveness naturally opens the discussion to other subjects, such as protecting all families and building a better, more equal society," Cherkasov continued.

"Based on the words and guidance of Pope Francis, we look forward to conversations with Catholic leaders where we can discuss how to build a more just society for all Illinoisans," Cherkasov said.

From a news release