The Vatican has released a groundbreaking document condemning “gender fluidity” as “nothing more than a confused concept of freedom in the realm of feelings and wants” as opposed to “anything based on the truths of existence.”
Released amid LGBT “pride month” by the Vatican department overseeing Catholic education, the 31-page document, called “Male and Female He Created Them,” warned that the acceptance of flexible ideas of gender threaten to “destabilize the family as an institution” and ignores the natural, God-given differences between men and women.
“It is becoming increasingly clear that we are now facing with what might accurately be called an educational crisis, especially in the field of affectivity and sexuality,” the document began, adding that the “process of identifying sexual identity” was being made difficult by the “fictitious (construct) known as ‘gender neuter’ or ‘third gender.'”
It lamented “calls for public recognition of the right to choose one’s gender, and of a plurality of new types of unions, in direct contradiction of the model of marriage as being between one man and one woman, which is portrayed as a vestige of patriarchal societies.”
The idea that gender is fluid is “founded on nothing more than a confused concept of freedom in the realm of feelings and wants, or momentary desires provoked by emotional impulses and the will of the individual, as opposed to anything based on the truths of existence,” it stated.
The guidance also said that “ideas of ‘intersex’ or ‘transgender’ lead to a masculinity or femininity that is ‘ambiguous.’”
“This oscillation between male and female becomes, at the end of the day, only a ‘provocative’ display against so-called ‘traditional frameworks,’ and one which, in fact, ignores the suffering of those who have to live situations of sexual indeterminacy,” it added.
The document urges Catholic teachers and educators to be “sufficiently prepared regarding the intricacies of the various questions that gender theory brings up and be fully informed about both current and proposed legislation.”
Still, it emphasized that issue “should not be looked at in isolation from the broader question of education in the call to love,” noting that the church should be open to listening to and talking with proponents of gender theory, and should not discriminate against those who defined their gender differently.
The document was signed by Cardinal Giuseppe Versaldi, the head of the Vatican’s Congregation for Catholic Education, and written as a guide for Catholic schools, teachers and educators.
The new guidance represents the first attempt to put the Vatican's position into an official text, notes The New York Times.
However, Pope Francis has previously warned that gender theory is one of the greatest threats to the modern family and repeatedly argued that people cannot choose their genders.
“Children are learning that they can choose their own sex. Why is sex, being a woman or a man, a choice and not a fact of nature?” he said in a 2017 interview.
While the move has been heavily criticized by the LGBT community, the conservative group Catholic Women's Forum praised the Vatican for "throwing a roadblock" in front of the transgender agenda.
"The document offers much-needed clarity for parents and educators, reaffirming that our human nature is a 'given' — it cannot be wished away or replaced," Mary Rice Hasson, director of the Catholic Women's Forum, told The Christian Post.
"Children need the certainty of knowing that they are created male or female — forever, and schools must respect parents' authority to teach the truth," she continued. "The Church rejects the idea that identity is an ever-shifting kaleidoscope of genders and sexualities. Who we are must be grounded in the truth that we are created male or female, forever, equal in dignity, and made for one another. "
The Vatican's guidance on gender and sexuality comes amid a nationwide push to include gender identity in classroom curriculums.
In February, the U.K. Department of Education announced English schools will significantly broaden sex and relationship education to cover topics including same-sex relationships, transgender people, and other issues.
In 2017, the Church of England issued a guidance telling its almost 5,000 schools to allow students "to be able to play with the many cloaks of identity."
"Children should be at liberty to explore the possibilities of who they might be without judgement or derision,” notes the report, which was applauded by the LGBT community. “For example, a child may choose the tutu, princess's tiara and heels and/or the firefighter's helmet, tool belt and superhero cloak without expectation or comment. Childhood has a sacred space for creative self-imagining.”