The Vatican announced on Wednesday that transgender individuals are eligible to receive baptism in the Catholic church.
According to a document published on the Vatican’s website, a transgender person, even if they have undergone hormone therapy and sex-reassignment surgery, can undergo baptism under the same conditions as other faithful, “as long as there is no risk of causing public scandal or confusion among the faithful.”
This statement was in response to inquiries from Bishop Jose Negri of Santo Amaro in Brazil, addressing the involvement of LGBTQ individuals in routine Catholic practices. The document, approved by Pope Francis on October 31, was released by the Vatican’s Dicastery of the Doctrine of the Faith.
Additionally, the Vatican clarified that transgender individuals are eligible to serve as godparents and witnesses at religious weddings. It also stated that individuals in same-sex relationships can serve as witnesses in Catholic weddings.
However, the document implied that children adopted by same-sex couples or conceived through surrogacy may face restrictions on baptism. It also suggested that individuals in same-sex relationships should not be godparents to baptized children.
This gesture marks the Vatican’s ongoing efforts to be more inclusive and welcoming to the LGBTQ community within the church.