Pope Francis said the world is living in a “moment of annihilation of man as God’s image” as the result of influential countries engaging in “ideological colonization,” and called it “terrible” that children are being taught in school that they can choose their gender.
The pope’s comments came during a private meeting with bishops last week, the transcript of which was released by the Vatican on Tuesday.
“We are living in a moment of annihilation of man as God’s image,” Francis said, behind which lies an “ideological colonization.” The pope identified one such colonization: “I’ll say it clearly with its first and last name — is gender.”
“Today, in schools they are teaching this to children — to children! — that everyone can choose their gender.”
The pope said schools teach children this because of “those people and institutions that give you money. It is the ideological colonization, also supported by influential countries. And this is terrible.”
Last May, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops slammed the Obama administration for commanding public schools to allow children to use whichever bathroom corresponds to their self-identified “gender identity.” In that letter, the bishops noted that the mandate flew in the face of Pope Francis’s statements about gender and human nature.
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