THE SERVANT GENERAL
WHO AM I TO JUDGE?
March 20, 2015
Pope Francis, when asked about the situation of a priest with
homosexual orientation, remarked “Who am I to judge?”
The homosexualists were ecstatic with joy, and spread their
conclusion that the pope was now tolerant and accepting of
homosexuality. This is entirely out of context. What the pope
actually said was, “If someone is gay and he searches
for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?”
teaching is that homosexuality is intrinsically disordered,
but the sin comes in active homosexuality, that is, having
sex with a person of the same sex. We in fact are to treat
homosexuals with respect and love, as they are children of
God. Homosexuals in fact can be genuinely searching for God
and avoiding sin in the process. Thus Pope Francis, as should
be the case with all of us, was not condemning (or judging)
one just for being a homosexual, that is, having a homosexual
But today’s liberals/progressives/modernists would have
us accept homosexuality, both as an orientation and also in
active practice. They say we should not condemn. We must be
accepting, tolerant, welcoming. We are not to judge. We are
also confused by Jesus’ own teaching: “Stop judging,
that you may not be judged.” (Mt 7:1).
can we, or should we not, judge? Yes and no. Jesus himself
gives the guideline: “Stop judging by appearances, but
judge justly.” (Jn 7:24). How do we do this?
It is right to condemn objective sin and wrongdoing.
is right for us to point out someone’s sin (see Mt
we judge the sin of others, it should be with the intent
of bringing the sinner back to God and helping ensure his
soul’s salvation (see Jas 5:20).
must be aware of our own shortcomings. We must not judge
hypocritically and self-righteously (see Mt 7:2-5).
we judge the objective sinful act itself, then we are judging
justly. However, we still should not judge the person by appearances.
This means that a person might be committing an objective
sin but might not personally be in grave sin. For example:
Becoming a prostitute out of extreme dire need, with no
other alternatives available, or because one is trafficked
and is forced into it. So there is no full consent to the
abortifacient contraceptives due to lack of knowledge about
Church teaching. So there is no full knowledge about grave
want not to be judged, so that their objective sin is not
pointed out or condemned. While applauding tolerance by others
in not judging them, they themselves are very intolerant of
those who do point out their sin. They in fact become vehement
and violent. They who proclaim “love, love, love”
are actually very hateful of those who disagree with their
was Jesus experience. “The world .... hates me, because
I testify to it that its works are evil.” (Jn 7:7).
When we condemn active homosexuality as evil, the secular
and liberal world will also hate us. “He judges us debased;
he holds aloof from our paths as from things impure.”
For our part, we are to hate the sin but love the sinner.
Love is to speak the truth. Mercy is to invite a sinner to