The Vatican has finally addressed the issue of whether Catholic priests can bless same-sex marriages.
In a decree approved by Pope Francis, the Vatican’s doctrinal office—the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF)—on Monday said priests and other church ministers cannot bless same-sex unions.
Even if priests approve such marriages, the doctrinal office said such blessings cannot be considered licit as it is impossible for “God to bless sin.”
"The blessing of homosexual unions cannot be considered licit, there are absolutely no grounds for considering homosexual unions to be in any way similar or even remotely analogous to God’s plan for marriage and family," The Vatican said in a statement.
The ruling by the CDF was in response to questions about gay unions and moves by some parishes in Germany and the US to impart such blessings as a sign of welcoming gay Catholics to the church.
The CDF explained that marriage between a man and a woman was a sacrament and blessings are related to the sacrament of marriage. As such, the blessings cannot be extended to gay couples.
“For this reason, it is not licit to impart a blessing on relationships, or partnerships, even stable, that involve sexual activity outside of marriage (i.e., outside the indissoluble union of a man and a woman open in itself to the transmission of life), as is the case of the unions between persons of the same-sex,” it said.