Vatican says people shouldn't be able to choose gender identity

Vatican rejects trans people says they 'annihilate the concept of nature'

Vatican rejects trans people says they 'annihilate the concept of nature'

The group released the document during what is observed worldwide as LGBTQ Pride Month.

The Vatican released a document Monday stating that gender can not be changed and the idea of it being a personal choice rather than biology is an attempt "to annihilate the concept of nature".

The Vatican said in a statement that the document's objective "is to support those engaged in the education of the younger generations to address ... the issues most debated today on human sexuality".

It was criticised by LGBTQ Catholics as contributing to bigotry and violence against gay and transgender people.

"'The document provides little by way of practical information for schools and families, many of whom are already working successfully and in collaboration with representative organisations such as TENI and BeLongTo, to create safe, supportive and welcoming learning environments for trans and gender variant young people to grow and flourish in education".

Even priestly advocates for LGBT Catholics noted that the text appeared to have relied entirely on previous papal pronouncements, Vatican documents and philosophers and theologians. It was prepared by the Congregation for Catholic Education, which talks of "an educational crisis" surrounding the topic of sexuality and the topic of "gender theory". "We do believe this is very unhelpful and I think it is hard as it denies the reality of our lives and denies the reality of what we find, especially with young people on the ground, and the work that ourselves and BeLongTo on the ground in schools for instance", she said.

Advocacy group New Ways Ministry said it would confuse people who are struggling with questions about their gender identity or sexual orientation.

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The report, by the Congregation for Catholic Education, adds: "Efforts to go beyond the constitutive male-female sexual difference lead to a masculinity..."

It called gender fluidity a symptom of the "confused concept of freedom" and "momentary desires" that characterise post-modern culture.

"Gender is also biologically determined by genetics, hormones and brain chemistry - things not visible at birth", DeBernardo said in a statement.

"People do not choose their gender, as the Vatican claims: they discover it through their lived experiences".

However, Francis would likely not disagree with the document's claims, given in 2015 he compared transgender people to nuclear weapons, saying the concept of gender identity "does not recognize the order of creation".

He said the Catholic Church should encourage this process of discovery, saying it's "a process by which individuals discover the wonderful way that God has created them".

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