Big news this week as “progressives” worldwide learned, to their utter shock and mournful consternation, that the pope is Catholic. Rumors are they will next examine wild bears, the woods, and certain mysteries appertaining thereto.
On Wednesday the Vatican confirmed what a handful of us knew days before. Pope Francis secretly (and privately) met with Kim Davis at Washington’s Vatican Embassy. Davis is best known as the county clerk from Kentucky who was jailed for refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
For some reason, liberals, who ordinarily treat Christianity as a societal burden, have pretended to care what the Vatican thinks about political issues in the U.S. since its fundamental transformation by Barack Obama. Enter conspiracy theories about the Pope’s meeting with Davis.
Here are the three questions the left wants answered. I am happy to oblige.
1. Does Pope Francis really support Kim Davis?
While specifics of Davis’s legal case were not discussed during the private meeting, days later Pope Francis publicly affirmed Kim’s “human right” as a “conscientious objector” to refuse to sign her name to gay marriage licenses – even in her official capacity as an elected official. This human right, incidentally, is an unalienable right protected by the First Amendment. “Stay strong,” the pope told Kim after the two embraced during the tearful meeting. He thanked her for her courage and asked her to pray for him. She likewise asked him to pray for her. These facts are not in dispute.
On Friday the Vatican issued another statement to clarify what was, or, better still, was not, discussed during the meeting: “The pope did not enter into the details of the situation of Mrs. Davis, and his meeting with her should not be considered a form of support of her position in all of its particular and complex aspects,” said Vatican spokesman Rev. Federico Lombardi.
As Austin Ruse of Breitbart.com notes:
The Vatican spokesman chose his words carefully. By stating that the meeting should not be considered support for her position ‘in all of its particular and complex aspects,’ Lombardi is allowing the notion that the meeting can be understood as general support for Davis’ cause, but not necessarily papal support for every detailed aspect of the legal case.
Indeed, neither Kim Davis nor anyone on her legal team ever suggested that the pope supports, or is even aware of, “her position in all of its particular and complex aspects.” Still, based upon his own words and the official position of the Catholic Church, we can know, for sure, of at least three “positions” on which the pope does support Kim Davis. They are: 1) Homosexual behavior is sin; 2) Marriage is exclusively between one man and one woman; and 3) No “human person,” whether a government official or not, should be forced to violate his or her conscience by affirming sin-based “gay marriage.”
2. Who asked for the meeting?
There has likewise been much speculation and liberal wishful thinking as to how this meeting came about, with some pundits desperately clinging to hopes that the pontiff was “actually swindled into meeting Kim Davis.”
Let’s end the speculation.
Vatican officials reached out, unsolicited, to Davis through her attorney, Mat Staver, and arranged the meeting out of the blue before Pope Francis even arrived in the U.S. for his whirlwind tour. The Davis team was led to believe that the request came from the pope himself. Not only did Pope Francis know who Kim Davis was when he told reporters on the plane ride home that conscientious objectors have a “human right” to decline participation in gay marriage, he had personally met Kim privately, and embraced her both physically and ideologically, before he did so.
The meeting was temporarily kept “secret” during the pope’s visit so as to avoid the predictable media circus that would, and later did, ensue. Both Davis’ representatives and the Vatican agreed that news of the meeting would be released upon the pope’s departure. He wasn’t “embarrassed” by the meeting, as some have suggested, but, rather, held it discreetly for logistical reasons alone.
3. What does the pope believe about homosexuality and gay marriage?
While protestant Christians obviously don’t agree with Pope Francis and the Catholic Church on everything, all faithful Christians, both protestant and Catholic alike, are nonetheless indebted to him for validating Kim’s courageous obedience to God. By extension, the pope has likewise validated every other Christian who refuses to be forced to participate in gay marriage. No faithful believer who wishes to remain in obedience to God can have anything to do with it.
On progressives’ push for gay marriage, Pope Francis has said:
The family is threatened by growing efforts on the part of some to redefine the very institution of marriage, by relativism, by the culture of the ephemeral, by a lack of openness to life.
Children have a right to grow up in a family with a father and a mother capable of creating a suitable environment for the child’s development and emotional maturity.
The complementarity of man and woman … is the root of marriage and family.
On Sept. 24, after Kim Davis and Pope Francis met privately, I had the distinct privilege of joining Kim and her husband, Joe, for dinner. In addition to sharing the pope’s views on sexual morality, marriage and freedom of conscience, I saw firsthand that they likewise share the pope’s profound love and compassion for those afflicted by these “trials.”
Kim Davis is an accidental hero.
Pope Francis is to be commended for honoring her as such.