Members of the LGBTQ+ community have unjustly had to endure hate and discrimination for years, and it's apparent that there are still individuals out there who can't view the world with an open and accepting mind.
And it seems a new statement from the Vatican has really riled people up...
The LGBTQ community is stronger than ever.
Since the annual observance of LGBT History Month began in the U.S. in 1994, the growth and acceptance of this community has been absolutely staggering.
LGBTQ+ identifying people are prouder than ever before...
And, because of the growing numbers of barriers being broken down, more and more people are coming out openly and proudly as LGBTQ+.
But discrimination still lurks...Despite amazing development, an array of narrow-minded individuals who spread constant hatred and fear amongst this community are still in existence.
Discrimination comes in many different forms.
Whether it's in the form of cyber-bullying or in the form of a violent physical act, discrimination against the LGBTQ community is rife... But, never the less, no type of discrimination is okay.
These hate crimes are happening all over the world and it's not okay...It's a heartbreaking reality that hate crimes against the community still happen.
Education is key...It is common knowledge that those who discriminate against and abuse members of the LGBTQ community are often uneducated on the topic, and are lashing out against something unfamiliar to them.
And this is why education on the topic is so important...The more people that are educated about the community, the fewer hate crimes and attacks there will be against LGBTQ+ identifying people.
But it is a sad reality that, no matter what, there will always be people out there who are against the community...
And the Catholic Church is one of them.
And a new statement from the Vatican this week has been released ...
And it has got many feeling unhappy.
"The Church does not have, and cannot have, the power to bless unions of persons of the same sex," the statement reads.
"The Church recalls that God himself never ceases to bless each of his pilgrim children in this world, because for him 'we are more important to God than all of the sins that we can commit.'"
"But he does not and cannot bless sin."
The church "cannot justify these relationships and render them legitimate objects of an ecclesial blessing since the positive elements exist within the context of a union not ordered to the Creator's plan."