LGBT: Repudiation of Vatican statements

vaticano

OFFICIAL ABGLT POSITION ON VATICAN STATEMENTS ABOUT HOMOSEXUALITY

ABGLT – the Brazilian Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Association – is a national network, founded in 1995, currently having 237 member organizations throughout Brazil. Its mission is to defend and promote the citizenship of these segments of the population. ABGLT is also active on the international scenario and has consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council.

In the face of the statement made by the Vatican’s Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, this Monday (12/04/2010) that it is “homosexualism” (sic), and not celibacy, that should be related to pedophilia, ABGLT publicly manifests itself as follows:

In its by-laws, ABGLT makes it clear that it is against pedophilia, regardless of the sexual orientation of gender identity of those who practice it, whether they be heterosexual or homosexual. During its 1st Congress, held on January 20th to 24th 2005, in Curitiba, Paraná, Brazil, ABGLT decided in favour of the defence of the Secular State and against the sexual exploitation and abuse of children and adolescents. It is ABGLT’s understanding that pedophilia is a disorder, as per the International Classification of Diseases 10 - F65.4: 302.2, and that the sexual abuse of children and adolescents is a crime. ABGLT has a permanent campaign on its website against pedophilia and the sexual abuse of children and adolescents: http://www.abglt.org.br/port/luta_pedofilia.php;

Many studies on pedophilia and the sexual abuse of children and adolescents indicate that the majority of these crimes is perpetrated by heterosexual people, without this implying that heterosexuality causes pedophilia. The issues relating to pedophilia itself are very complex and cannot be reduced to a simplistic differentiation based on the sexual orientation of the aggressors. What does arise as a tendency in the studies is that the crimes are committed by people who are close to, hold authority over and count on the trust of the underaged, such as parents, relatives, priests;

ABGLT does not accept this provocation by the Vatican against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) people, which is nothing more than an attempt to draw attention away from the more important problem that proliferates within the bosom of the Catholic Church, and which undoubtedly should be explained and clarified to society in general;

ABGLT defends the Secular State and understands that religious freedom does not give the Vatican the right to judge with its own laws its peers who abuse children and adolescents. ABGLT maintains that ordained people who commit the crime of sexual abuse of children and adolescents, in addition to receiving due healthcare, must be subject to the penalties provided for by secular laws, in the same way as the rest of the population. As such, ABGLT joins other human rights organizations and demands that the Vatican provide an explanation regarding the crimes committed by catholic priests, and that it does not blame the LGBT community in this irresponsible manner;

ABGLT, differently to fundamental religious sectors, defends sexual education for children and adolescents, in order for them to learn to have autonomy over their bodies, and learn to protect themselves from and report abuse at home, in churches, and wherever else it may occur;

ABGLT calls on professional, human rights and LGBT organizations, both national and international, to make pronouncements on this matter;

ABGLT hopes that the Vatican’s Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, will be capable of showing the minimum of respect to the families of the children abused by priests and bishops of the Catholic Church, and that, instead of placing the blame of its scandals on the homosexual community, it reflects on the past and on the harm that the Church has historically caused to Black people, the disabled, women, Jews, gypsies, homosexuals and children and adolescents throughout the world. Will the Church, in the future, also ask forgiveness of the homosexual community for yet another injustice it is committing now?

Long live the Secular State. For the right for children and adolescents to have Sexual Education, for the punishment (under secular laws) of ordained people who sexually abuse children and adolescents, for a new Church that respects the human rights of all citizens, indiscriminately.

ABGLT - Brazilian Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Association

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