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Closet Liberal Pope Supported Gay Civil Unions Michael Sohn/AP

Pope Supported Gay Civil Unions

A closet liberal? Old colleagues of the newly installed Pope Francis recall that in 2010, when Argentina was on the verge of legalizing gay marriage (and the Catholic Church led a charge against the proposed law, condemning it as the work of the devil), then-Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio advocated in a meeting of bishops that the Argentine church should support gay civil unions. A gay-rights leader who spoke with him said that Bergoglio supported civil unions but not same-sex marriage.The unexpected approach was more pragmatic than theological though, as he saw civil unions at the time as "the lesser of two evils," according to his authorized biographer. Still, it offers insight into the kind of pragmatic leadership he may bring to the papacy.

March 19, 2013 10:45 PM