Pope Francis has frequently used the term “ideological colonization” throughout the 10 years of his pontificate, particularly to describe instances when aid money for developing countries has been tied to contraceptives, abortion, sterilization, and gender ideologies.
In a conversation with Polish bishops in 2016, Pope Francis said: “Today children — children — are taught in school that everyone can choose his or her sex. Why are they teaching this? Because the books are provided by the people and institutions that give you money. These forms of ideological colonization are also supported by influential countries. And this is terrible!”
The pope told Piqué that he was not currently writing a new encyclical and denied that he had been asked to write a document on the subject of gender.
While he is not writing something on gender ideology, the pope said that he talks about the subject “because some people are a bit naive and believe that it is the way to progress.”
He said that they “do not distinguish what is respect for sexual diversity or diverse sexual preferences from what is already an anthropology of gender, which is extremely dangerous because it eliminates differences, and that erases humanity, the richness of humanity, both personal, cultural, and social, the diversities and the tensions between differences.”
The pope noted that he always distinguishes “between what pastoral care is for people who have a different sexual orientation and what gender ideology is.”
“They are two different things,” he added.
When Piqué asked Pope Francis if he knew that in Argentina people are asked to indicate on official forms if they are male, female, or non-binary sex, the pope said that it reminded him of the “futuristic” novel, "Lord of the World," written by Monsignor Robert Hugh Benson in 1907.
He said that the book presents the idea of “a future in which differences are disappearing and everything is the same, everything is uniform, a single leader of the whole world.”
In the interview with La Nación — the third papal interview published on March 10 — Pope Francis also reflected on the 10 years of his pontificate, his concern for the war in Ukraine, and why he has not traveled to his native Argentina.