Pope Francis Tries To Sweep France’s Gay Ambassador Under The Rug; France Isn’t Having It

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Pope Francis met with the recently appointed French ambassador to The Vatican for 15 minutes this weekend, and reportedly rejected the appointment due to his sexuality.

Laurent Stéfanini, a high-ranking official in the French government who is openly gay, was appointed to the post in January. Though it usually takes about six weeks for The Vatican to approve the appointment of an ambassador, the nation has remained silent on the matter, an act almost tantamount to a veto.

Related: The Vatican Wants To Reject Their New French Ambassador Because He’s Gay

According to French newspaper Le Canard enchaîné, the pontiff didn’t specifically reject Stéfanini because he is gay, but due to his displeasure with 2013 legislation that made same-sex marriage legal in France.

According to the report, Pope Francis was most upset by the thought of Stéfanini getting married to another man while serving as ambassador to The Vatican.

The Catholic Church, which has previously rejected at least three appointments due to the sexuality or marital statuses of those officials, has remained silent on the matter and continues to refuse to officially accept or reject the appointment. For his part, Stéfanini has also remained silent on the matter.

Related: Pope Francis Gives The Thumbs Up To An Anti-LGBT Referendum In Slovakia

Stephane Le Foll, a spokesperson for the French government, confirmed the meeting had taken place but denied the report of rejection. “Nothing has changed,” he said. “France has proposed a candidate and for the time being we are waiting for the Vatican’s reply after the usual discussions and review of his candidacy.”

Some speculate that if Stéfanini was rejected by the Pope in private, the French government is holding strong so The Vatican will be forced to officially reject him in public and provide a reason.

Matthew Tharrett is a writer, filmmaker, and above all else, a Britney fan. He once shared a milkshake with Selena Gomez.
@mattharrett