Pope Francis tells a trans person "God loves us as we are," trans swimmers in Japan are allowed to compete in a competition, and Ghana's Supreme Court rejects a bid to block an anti-LGBTQ bill.
Pope Tells Trans Person That ‘God Loves Us As We Are’
Pope Francis told a young trans person that “God loves us as we are.” The message came via podcast, where the Pope listened and responded to audio messages from young people.
According to NBC News, another person told the Pope they were “torn by the dichotomy between [their Catholic] faith and transgender identity.” Francis replied, “The Lord always walks with us ... Even if we are sinners, he draws near to help us. The Lord loves us as we are. This is God’s crazy love.”
These messages come before the Catholic Youth Festival in Portugal, which Francis will attend soon.
Francis will also attend an upcoming world summit of bishops in October to discuss the church’s stance towards LGBT people.
Trans Swimmers To Be Included In 'Open Category'
Photo via Pixabay.
Husain Al-Musallam, The World Aquatics President, announced that swimming will set up an “open category” that will include trans competitors.
According to NBC News, the announcement said the category would take place in the future among other races and reports believe that it could start as soon as this year.
“This is a very complex topic,” said Al-Musallam at the World Aquatics Congress in the southwestern Japanese city of Fukuoka. “But I am delighted to tell you today that we are now making plans for the first trial of an open category, and we hope to be able to confirm all the details soon.”
He continued by saying, “Our sport must be open to everybody.”
Supreme Court Rejects Bid To Block Anti-LGBTQ Bill
Ghana Supreme Court Justices. Photo via ghanaweb.com.
Ghana’s Supreme Court dismissed a legal challenge seeking to block parliament from passing an anti-LGBT bill.
Amanda Odoi filed the lawsuit challenging the bill’s constitutionality and said it would impact donor aid and other forms of financial support. However, Ghana's Supreme Court ruled that arguments were not sufficiently convincing to grant an injunction.
Since 2021, lawmakers have been debating the bill, which would criminalize same-sex relations and being transgender. The bill would also include jail sentences of up to 10 years for advocating for LGBTQ rights.
According to Reuters, critics and advocates believe that passing the Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values bill would further reduce freedoms in a country where gay sex is already punishable with up to three years in jail. Opponents to the bill also say it encourages conversion therapy, as sentencing can be reduced if those found guilty request treatment.
The bill has received world-wide criticism from world leaders with the United Nations saying the passing of the law would create "a system of state-sponsored discrimination and violence" against sexual minorities.