Transgender Community Disappointed by Vatican’s Stance, Cites Lack of Empathy!

voiced dissatisfaction on Monday over a new Vatican declaration that rejects the basic idea of altering one’s biological sex, as well as a priest who greets them to his parish.

It was just a restatement of traditional Catholic doctrine, but some trans-Catholics had been inspired to think that the church would become more tolerant by recent actions taken by Pope Francis, which added to their dismay.

A group of transsexual women have been invited by the pope to participate in his weekly public audiences. Additionally, the Vatican declared last year that transgender people can be godparents and have Catholic baptisms under specific conditions.

“A document such as this is extremely detrimental to the greater LGBTQ+ community, but particularly to the trans community,” stated 32-year-old Maxwell Kuzma, a transgender man who has always identified as Catholic and who works as a writer and film editor in rural Ohio.

“This document fails to extend that same respect, love, and support, despite the care and love Pope Francis has personally shown to the trans community in his personal interactions,” Kuzma wrote in an email.

Michael Sennett, a transgender man working in an LGBTQ+ ministry at St. Ignatius of Loyola Church in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, expressed concern that the word “transgender” is not included in the new statement.

Sennett stated via email that “avoiding the word ‘transgender’ speaks to limiting the dignity of transgender people.” “Even if pastoral engagement is the ultimate goal, the church cannot possibly engage us if it is unable to identify or recognize who we really are.”

The document’s warning that God made man and woman as physiologically distinct, independent entities and that people shouldn’t tamper with that or attempt to “make oneself God” also appalled him.

Sennett declared, “Transgender people are beloved, intentional creations of God, just like cisgender men and women are.” “Transgender individuals who use hormone therapy or undergo surgery are not deities; rather, we honor and embrace our true selves.”

Sennet said, “Studies have repeatedly confirmed the detrimental effects that transgender individuals, whether young or old, suffer when they are not given affirming treatment. “Transitioning is a lifeline, not a medical agenda seeking to recruit people.”

Transgender lady from New Jersey, Christine Zuba, expressed her dismay at the Vatican doctrinal office’s 20-page study, which deemed gender-affirming surgery a “grave violation of human dignity,” comparable to international crimes like human trafficking and war.

In an email, Zuba stated, “Transgender people are being condemned for who we are, and more importantly, we become subject to potential harm.” “It (sadly) gives fuel to those who deny our existence once more.”

“We are not, but we do exist.” Though we don’t, we have dignity. I’d rather not even consider what the political and religious right would say about this.

Zuba described Pope Francis as “a good and holy man.”

But our church still has a lot to learn, she said. “Ideology is Not Who We Are.” Speak with us. Study.

Regarding transgender policy, the Catholic Church in the United States is not homogenous. Certain dioceses have released strict restrictions that essentially prohibit acknowledging a change in gender identity. However, some parishes—such as the Church of Our Lady of Grace in Hoboken, New Jersey—have embraced transgender people. A few years ago, Zuba was approached by the parish’s priest, the Rev. Alexander Santora, to give a portion of the homily during the annual Pride Mass.

The Vatican document’s claim that homosexuality shouldn’t be made a crime is one of the things that motivated Santora, he told The Associated Press.

“However, I worry that this document’s tone may further harm transgender people and feed the hate that is spreading throughout the United States, with more laws that are oppressive and will encourage violence and suicides,” he said in an email. “I hope some pious trans-Catholics from around the globe are called by the Vatican to examine this document and make it more pastoral.”

Film editor and writer Kuzma, who lives in Ohio, expressed disappointment with the Vatican declaration but nevertheless maintained optimism.

“Although we are in the spotlight right now, we have existed throughout human history and have frequently been assigned special roles in societies that acknowledged our exceptional gifts,” he stated.

“I hope that one day the Vatican will genuinely recognize the beautiful and important gifts transgender people have to share with the church and the world, but I know the Catholic Church moves slowly.”


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