Vatican releases critical statement on gender theory © Julia Steinbrecht (KNA)
The Vatican has published a critical statement on the topic of gender. Among other things, the document criticizes gender ideas that advocate "manipulation of the body at will" and condemns radical theories.
At the same time, the document seeks to encourage dialogue, the text says. Respect for all people must always be taught: No one should be persecuted or discriminated against, for example, because of their faith or sexual inclinations.
The multi-page document ied by the Catholic Congregation for Education on Whit Monday promotes the Catholic doctrine of the different identity of men and women and the Christian concept of family. It bears the title "As man and woman he created them. For a path of dialogue on gender in education".
Attention, misunderstandings possible
The head of the Vatican's Congregation for Education, Cardinal Giuseppe Versaldi, stressed that there is a "high risk of misunderstanding and ideological conflict" on the subject of gender. With its document, the Congregation for Education wants to invite dialogue, he wrote in an article accompanying the document for the Vatican newspaper "Osservatore Romano".
The introduction to the 57-point document states that there is a "real educational emergency" with regard to emotional life and sexuality. It is important to distinguish between gender research and gender ideologies. Gender research, the document says, seeks to better understand the ways in which women's and men's differences are lived out in respective cultures.
The thing about freedom
In many cases, however, "allegedly neutral" concepts are conveyed, which reflect an image of man that contradicts "faith and sound reason", but also nature. Thus, a "distance from nature" leads to the fact that emotional decisions of the individual become the sole criterion. "In such a view, the understanding of sexual identity, like that of family, are 'liquefied' or 'diluted,' as is the case with other aspects of postmodern culture," the text reads.
The document attributes such theories "to a dualistic anthropology that separates the body (reduced to inanimate material) and the human will, which itself acquires an absolute power to manipulate the body at will". This is based on a "confused concept of freedom" that is dominated by feelings and desires, some of which are only temporary. There is also criticism of the attempt to prescribe how children are to be brought up over and above families and their values.
Vatican rebukes Catholic educational institutions
For the better switching of the catholic Gendervorstellung the letter takes particularly families as well as catholic educational facilities in the obligation. They should be role models themselves, but would also have to be better prepared for current developments and discussions on the subject.
Sceptical statements on gender theory had already been made in Pope Francis' letter on marriage and the family, "Amoris laetitia". "Human identity is surrendered to an individualistic freedom of choice, which can also change over time," the 2016 doctrinal letter states.