Search icon


28th May 2024

Pope Francis apologises for using derogatory term for gay men

Nina McLaughlin

“The Pope never intended to offend or express himself in homophobic terms.”

The Vatican has apologised after Pope Francis was reported to have used a derogatory term for gay men during the Italian Bishops’ Conference.

The Pope said the slur during a closed-door meeting with bishops, as originally reported by Dagospia, a political gossip site.

He is understood to have described priesthood colleges as being too full of “frociaggine”, which is a highly offensive slur in Italian.

The 87-year-old reportedly also reiterated his belief that gay men should not be allowed to become priests.

“Pope Francis is aware of the articles recently published about a conversation, behind closed doors, with the bishops of the CEI,” the Vatican wrote in a statement, via Sky News.

“As he stated on several occasions, ‘In the Church there is room for everyone, for everyone! Nobody is useless, nobody is superfluous, there is room for everyone. Just as we are, all of us.’

“The Pope never intended to offend or express himself in homophobic terms, and he apologises to those who felt offended by the use of a term reported by others.”

Pope Francis has been credited with leading the Catholic Church with taking a more welcoming stance towards the LGBT+ community, although little has tangibly changed.

Back in 2013, when he was at the beginning of his papacy, the Pope said: “If a person is gay and seeks God and has good will, who am I to judge?”

Related links: