- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 2, 2016

In remarks delivered last week, Pope Francis said ideologies that profess children can “choose their gender” constitute the very “annihilation of man as image of God.”

“Today, in schools they are teaching this to children – to children! – that everyone can choose their gender,” Francis said, according to a transcript released on Tuesday by the Vatican, The Associated Press reported.

The pontiff was addressing bishops in a closed-door meeting during his pilgrimage to Poland last week when he made the remarks.

He said he wanted to conclude the meeting by reflecting on how we “are living a moment of annihilation of man as the image of God.”

Francis said “ideological colonization” is being advanced by “very influential countries,” which he declined to name. One such colonization includes that of “gender.”

“I’ll say it clearly with its first and last name — is gender,” the pontiff said.

​Citing his predecessor, Benedict XVI, Francis said we are living through “the epoch of sin against God the Creator.”​

• Bradford Richardson can be reached at brichardson@washingtontimes.com.

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