The 30-page document entitled "Male and Female He Created Them: Towards a Path of Dialogue on the Question of Gender in Education" comes in the second week of the USA recognition of Pride Month meant to celebrate the LGBTQ community.
"This documents fundamentally disregards and disrespects LGBTQI people by claiming our gender identity and sexual orientation are simply 'choices'".
The document notes "challenges" rising from gender theory which "denies the difference and reciprocity in nature of a man and a woman and envisages a society without sexual differences, thereby eliminating the anthropological basis of the family".
"The process of identifying sexual identity is made more hard by the fictitious construct known as "gender neuter" or "third gender" which has the effect of obscuring the fact that a person's sex is a structural determinant of male or female identity", it states.
The Vatican booklet denounced theories that attempted to "annihilate the concept of nature" and "educational programmes and legislative trends that make a radical break with the actual biological difference between male and female".
However, the document claims the congregation wants to "train young people to be open and interested in the reality that surrounds them, capable of care and tenderness".
While the document is not signed by Pope Francis, it has quoted from his speeches and teachings several times and those of previous popes.
"The real-life experiences of LGBT people seem entirely absent from this document", said the Rev. James Martin, a Jesuit priest who wrote a book on improving Catholic Church outreach to the LGBT community, titled "Building a Bridge". Such confusion leads to self-harm, addiction, and even suicide.
"The misinformation the document contains will cause families to reject their children, and it will increase alienation of LGBT people from the Church", he said.
"By ignoring new scientific understandings of gender identity, and by refusing to engage in dialogue with LGBT people about their lived experiences of self-understanding and faith, the Vatican remains in the dark ages, promoting a false teaching that relies on myth, rumor, and falsehoods", DeBernardo said.
He also tweeted, "the document is mainly a dialogue with philosophers and theologians, and with other church documents; but not with scientists and biologists, not with psychologists, and certainly not with LGBT people, whose experiences are given little if any weight".
The Vatican's release of the guidance coincided with Pride month celebrated around the world. Italy also observes Pride Month in June and a pride parade was held in Rome over the weekend.
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