The pope made headlines again by saying that the Catholic Church is too obsessed with gay rights:
Pope Francis, in the first extensive interview of his six-month-old papacy, said that the Roman Catholic church had grown “obsessed” with preaching about abortion, gay marriage and contraception, and that he has chosen not to speak of those issues despite recriminations from some critics.
In remarkably blunt language, Francis sought to set a new tone for the church, saying it should be a “home for all” and not a “small chapel” focused on doctrine, orthodoxy and a limited agenda of moral teachings.“It is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time,” the pope told the Rev. Antonio Spadaro, a fellow Jesuit and editor in chief of La Civiltà Cattolica, the Italian Jesuit journal whose content is routinely approved by the Vatican. “The dogmatic and moral teachings of the church are not all equivalent. The church’s pastoral ministry cannot be obsessed with the transmission of a disjointed multitude of doctrines to be imposed insistently.
“We have to find a new balance,” the pope continued, “otherwise even the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards, losing the freshness and fragrance of the Gospel.”
If you’re speaking from a PR perspective, yup, that’s the problem. If you keep advocating a discriminatory position that is at odds with most civilized people, it’s going to hurt your rep. Gay people and gay marriage creates happiness with no perceptible downsides. Contraception is a moral necessity, not a soul-forfeiting evil. Saying otherwise makes you look like ignorant humans, not the keepers of god-given wisdom.
From a moral perspective, constantly advocating positions you hold is not the problem. The problem is that the Church actually holds those positions. The problem is that the Catholic Church endorses and even pursues discrimination, and the pope is not changing this. He is saying that the Catholic Church should be a home for all, and he apparently thinks this can be achieved by still trying to deprive gay people of equality, but just not talking about it as much.
How I wish the Catholic Church was more interested in fixing its morals, not just its PR.