Pope Francis meets 'the devil's daughter'

by Staff, |
Pope Francis, foreground, walks past members of the Vatican tribunal, Roman Rota, on the occasion of the opening of the judicial year at the Vatican, Friday, Jan. 23, 2015. | L'OSSERVATORE ROMANO/Pool

VATICAN CITY (Christian Examiner) -- Pope Francis met with a transsexual and his fiancé at the Vatican Saturday after speaking with him earlier on Christmas Day. The pontiff spoke to 48-year-old Diego Neria Lajarraga, a Spanish man who said he had been treated as an outcast in his parish after undergoing gender reassignment surgery.

Lajarraga came from Plasencia in Western Spain to meet the Pope, and told the Spanish Holy newspaper that he had heard the Catholic leader's sermons many times and "felt that he would listen to me."

The man also told reporters that he had been called "the devil's daughter" in his local parish and was treated poorly by the other parishioners, AFP reported.

Although the Vatican would not confirm that the meeting took place or what the Pope and Lajarraga spoke about, it is a common practice for the pontiff to personally meet with Catholics the world over. He recently met with Angelina Jolie and several of her children when she came to the Vatican for a screening of her inspirational film and directorial debut "Unbroken."

Still, Pope Francis has never showed any intention of changing the Catholic church's stance on gender reassignment. He previously said in a January homily that gender theory is an "ideological colonization that tries to destroy the family."

"Why do I say ideological colonization? Because they use a people's need as an opportunity to come in and impose their will on children. But this is nothing new. The dictatorships of the last century did the same thing; they came in with their doctrine. Think of the Balilla. Think of the Hitler Youth," he continued.