France is sending a gay ambassador to Vatican City. His name is Laurent Steffanini.
The Vatican is deliberating on whether to accept France’s choice of an openly gay man as ambassador. While France legalized same-sex marriages on May 18, 2013, many right-wing Catholics came out to protest in very large numbers. Remember, that the Netherlands was the first country to legalize marriage equality back in the year 2000.
The Appointment of Laurent Stefanini
France’s Council of Ministers approved openly gay Laurent Stefanini to take over the role left vacant. There has been disapproval from French Prime Minister Manuel Valls who described the appointment as a “provocation.” What is surprising is Catholic clergy support for Laurent Stefanini. The Archbishop of Paris, Cardinal André Vingt-Trois and the former president of the Bishops’ Conference of France have sent a letter to Pope Francis to support the French Government’s choice of ambassador.
Vatican’s Right to Refuse Ambassadors
While Pope Francis has stated “Who am I to judge” when asked about homosexuality, the Vatican has refused other nominations.
Earlier this year, Argentina reportedly withdrew its nomination of former Justice Minister Alberto Iribarne as ambassador to the Holy See after the Vatican objected that Iribarne had been divorced and remarried ,in violation of Catholic teaching
It’s turning out to be a ‘wait and see’ situation. paula