Pope Francis alleged today that the blessing for same-sex couples, approved by a recent Vatican document, is aimed at “the people”, in a closed-door meeting with the Roman clergy, who raised his doubts on the subject.

“The Pope (…) has clarified the situation a little. The intention is to bless people,” summarized the vicar bishop of Rome, Angelo De Donatis, on Italian public television RAI at the end of the meeting.

The pontiff, affected on Friday by mild bronchitis, brought together more than 800 priests, deacons and religious this Saturday in the Roman basilica of Saint John Lateran to discuss some important topics and chose to answer their questions.

The meeting was behind closed doors and the Holy See has not yet reported on its content.

The Diocese of Rome has specified that it was “an open and familiar dialogue in a climate of cordiality” in which, in addition, the Pope announced that he would resume his visits to the Roman parishes, after the last three meetings in some areas with problems. .

The meeting with the clergy took place in the midst of the storm unleashed by the possibility of imparting blessings to same-sex couples or those in an “irregular” situation from a canonical point of view, although without justifying them or equating them with marriage.

On December 18, the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith published the declaration “Fiducia Supplians” in which the possibility of imparting a spontaneous blessing without rituals to this type of couples was opened.

This historic opening by Pope Francis has raised doubts and certain divisions since part of the clergy around the world, its most conservative faction and bishops such as the Africans have called it “blasphemy” and refuse to give the blessing.

The prefect emeritus of the Congregation for Divine Worship, Guinean Cardinal Robert Sarah, one of the most critical of the Argentine pope, has described the document as “heresy” and has encouraged opposition to its application.

The prefect of the congregation, Argentine Cardinal Víctor Manuel Fernández, defended in the text that “the possibility of blessing couples in irregular situations and same-sex couples can be understood without officially validating their status or altering in any way the teaching.” of the Church on marriage.

Given the controversy, Cardinal Fernández had to clarify on January 4 that the blessing of homosexual couples will not be “liturgical or ritualized” and that it will not entail their “justification.”