The handwritten letter sent by Pope Francis on December 10 to the American nun Jeannine gramick, of the Loreto Sisters at the foot of the Cross, co-founder of the Ministry of New Paths of the Catholic Apostolate, is a vindication of her work in the gay community.
In fact, it is a true rehabilitation, since the nun recognized for her tasks of assistance, support and support to the LGBT community, in recent years, was the target of both the American episcopate and punitive sanctions from the Holy See.
Sister Gramick, recalls American Jesuit magazine, celebrates 50 years of work and support for LGBT people. Remarking that anniversary as the reason for his letter, the Pope congratulates her in Spanish for “50 years of closeness, compassion and tenderness” in a report that he describes as “in the style of God.”
Jorge Bergoglio’s letter to Sister Gramick is the latest in a series of letters from the pontiff written to gay Catholics and others who serve and support LGBT people.
In his letter, Francisco praises Gramick for his willingness to suffer for love. “You were not afraid of ‘closeness’”, he writes, “and when you approached you did it ‘feeling the pain’ and without condemning anyone, but with the ‘tenderness’ of a sister and a mother”.
“Thank you Sister Jeannine ”, the letter concludes,“ for all your closeness, compassion and tenderness.“, According to slogan ANSA.
Almost from the beginning of her work at New Paths Ministry, Sister Gramick served alongside the other co-founder, Father Robert Nugent, of the Society of St. Country, who educated Catholics in the science, sociology, and theology of the homosexuality.
Some bishops in the United States, Francis always remembers, pressured Sister Gramick’s superiors to remove her from the Ministry.
When they refused to do so, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith launched an 11-year investigation that ended in a notification, which said that Sister Gramick and Father Nugent’s presentations on homosexuality did not accurately represent “intrinsic evil homosexual acts and objective homosexual inclination disorder ”, and banished them from any pastoral activity linked to LGBT people.
Just last month, after the General Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops removed a link from its website to a webinar organized by the Ministry of New Paths, the same Ministry revealed that Pope Francis had written two letters to it earlier. of the year praising their Service.
Subsequently, the link to the webinar was restored. In those letters, Francis, writing about Sister Gramick, acknowledged that he knew “how much she suffered”, describing her as “a courageous woman who makes her decisions in prayer.”
It is not the first time that the Supreme Pontiff has made this type of gesture. In June of last year he sent a letter to James Martin, one of the best known priests in the United States for his defense of gay Catholics. “Our Heavenly Father approaches with love each one of his children, each and every one of them. His heart is open to each and every one ”, Francis wrote to the Jesuit on the occasion of the Catholic pastoral conference “Projection of the ministry for LGBTQ Catholics” held at that time.
The full letter dated June 26, 2021:
James Martin, SJ
Thanks for your email and for the photos. I thanked your nephew for his kindness to me and for choosing the name Francisco. . . and compliment him on the stockings. . . he made me laugh. Tell him I pray for him and please do it for me.
Regarding your PD, I want to thank you for your pastoral zeal and your ability to be close to people, with that closeness that Jesus had and that reflects the closeness of God. Our Heavenly Father approaches with love each one of his children, each and every one. His heart is open to each and every one. It is Father. God’s “style” has three traits: closeness, compassion, and tenderness. This is how he approaches each one of us. “
Thinking about your pastoral work, I see that you continually seek to imitate this style of God. You are a priest for everyone, just as God is the Father of everyone. I pray for you to continue like this, being close, compassionate and with great tenderness.
And I pray for your faithful, your “parishioners”, all those whom the Lord puts you to take care of, protect, make them grow in the love of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Please don’t forget to pray for me. May Jesus bless you and may the Holy Virgin take care of you.