Pope Francis’ Vision of Gender


Fr Richard Umbers explains Pope Francis’ theology on gender in the context of feminist, Marxist and post-structuralist writers. In this explanation, Fr Richard demonstrates Pope Francis’ adherence to and recapitulation of traditional Catholic teaching on marriage – with a special focus on the poor.

In this podcast:
  • 2:26: Introduction to Pope Francis’ teaching on men and women, and affirmation of traditional Catholic thought.
  • 4:28: Feminism and Karl Marx: Capital and alienation of the working class.
    • 5:03: The inequality of commerce for the subjugation of women.
  • 6:53: The new view of sexual humanity as a distinction between “sex” and “gender”.
    • 7:24: Robert Stoller: First to make the distinction between biological “sex” and “gender” identity for transgendered persons.
    • 8:04: Janice Raymond: Feminist opposition to implications transgender theory.
    • 9:59: Judith Butler: Critical reply to Janice Raymond.
  • 12:55: Pope Francis’s contribution: Respectful treatment of persons who identify as transsexual or homosexual, affirms traditional Catholic teaching on men, women and sexuality (Amoris Laetitia).
    • 13:29: Gender theory is an expression of frustration because we no longer know how to approach sexual difference. Attempting to remove sexual difference is not a solution.
    • 14:31: Against the “ideology of gender”.
  • 19:05: Pope Francis’ principles for the fundamental parameters for interpreting and evaluating social phenomena (Evangelii Gaudium and Amoris Laetitia).
    • 19:28: Time is greater than space.
    • 23:03: Realities are greater than ideas.
    • 28:11: Unity prevails over conflict.


This presentation was part of The Christopher Dawson Centre for Cultural Studies’ 2016 Colloquium on the theme “The nature of men and women: complementary but different”, hosted in Hobart, Australia.

About Author

The Most Reverend Dr Richard Umbers is a priest of the Prelature of Opus Dei. He holds a doctorate in Philosophy from the University of Navarre and is an Auxilary Bishop for the Archdiocese of Sydney.

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