Vatican Cardinal Breaks Ranks with Ghana’s Bishops on the Criminalization of Homosexual Acts

Cardinal Peter Turkson, the Ghana-born Chancellor of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, has broken ranks with the bishops of Ghana, who have praised Parliament for passing legislation that criminalizes homosexual acts.

“My position is contrary to what has just been passed, to criminalize anybody, if you are able to identify the crime, LGBT cases are not to be criminalized,” he told the BBC.

“What I think the move should be is to be a lot of education about certainly cultural attitudes in some of these regards are very deeply rooted and all of that, and we need a lot of education to get people to separate, make a distinction between what is crime and what is not crime, what is the personal habit and not a personal habit,” he added.

In a September 2021 statement that was echoed in a submission to a parliamentary committee, the nation’s bishops deplored homosexual acts and lent support the legislation, stating that “as a Church, we want this abominable practice made illegal in our country.”

In a January 2023 interview, Pope Francis criticized laws criminalizing homosexuality as “unjust,” while noting the sinful nature of homosexual acts.

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