Friday, 23 Oct, 1.52 pm Republic TV

Venezuela's Maduro Suggests Lawmakers To Discuss Same-sex Marriage After Pope's Comment

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has reportedly urged the country's National Assembly to discuss same-sex marriage after Pope Francis' vocal support. Several Latin American countries, including Brazil and Argentina, have laws or court decisions legalising gay marriage, it is not legal in Venezuela. Pope's clear message on same-sex civil unions could show the way in the heavily Roman Catholic nation.

Speaking at an event with leaders of his ruling party, Maduro reportedly said that he has friends and acquaintances who are happy with Pope's comment on same-sex marriage. According to local media reports, he urged the leaders to discuss the issue during its next National Assembly session beginning in January after legislative elections scheduled for December 6.

'Children of God'

During an interview for a feature-length documentary 'Francesco', first premiered at the Rome Film Festival on October 21, Pope Francis endorsed same-sex civil unions for the first time. Pope called those in same-sex relations 'Children of God' and also added that there is a need for a civil union law for same-sex people. While serving as the archbishop of Buenos Aires, Pope had spoken in favour of civil union for same-sex couples, but this is the first time that he has spoken in favour since becoming the chief pastor of the worldwide Catholic Church.

"Homosexual people have the right to be in a family. They are children of God.... What we have to have is a civil union law; that way they are legally covered," he said.

Reverend James Martin, a Jesuit priest who has been on the frontline in the attempts to find common ground between same-sex couples and the Church, reportedly said that the Pope's words were a positive step towards the "church's support for LGBT people". Unlike other biopics, the documentary 'Francesco' is an overview of the world's tragedies and tribulations, with Pope Francis talking about them in the background and also providing possible ways the world could effectively tackle them.

(Image: AP)

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