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Cardinal Tobin: ‘I don’t presume that every person who identifies as LGBTQ is sexually active’

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The outspoken Cardinal Joseph Tobin of Newark, New Jersey, had a lot to say when he sat down for a chat with Crux during the Orlando convocation:

If anyone suspects his backing for Francis comes at the expense of Catholic orthodoxy on matters such as the Church’s pro-life teaching or its sexual morality, Tobin has some surprises in store.

Asked about his outspoken support for immigrant rights, for example, he quickly connects it to the 1973 Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton decisions legalizing abortion as a further chapter in the “brutalization of the American heart,” one that “affects not only the immigrant population but all of us.”

On his recent decision to welcome a LGBTQ pilgrimage to the Newark Cathedral, Tobin made clear it was not a prelude to challenging traditional sexual ethics.

“I don’t presume that every person who identifies him or herself as LGBTQ is sexually active,” he said. “If they’re attempting to live a chaste life, then they certainly need the support of the believing community, a chance to pray, and to know that they’re welcomed within the body of Christ.”

The bottom line, according to Tobin, is that “I preach what the Church preaches, and teach what the Church teaches, and believe it with great serenity.” At the same time, he said, “I feel it’s my job to welcome people.”

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Deacon Greg Kandra
Headlines and Homilies
Deacon Greg Kandra is a Roman Catholic deacon in the Diocese of Brooklyn, New York. For nearly three decades, he was a writer and producer for CBS News, where he contributed to a variety of programs and was honored with every major award in broadcasting. Deacon Greg now serves as Multimedia Editor for Catholic Near East Welfare Association (CNEWA.) He and his wife live in Forest Hills, New York.
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