Elton John slams Vatican for “investing millions” in Rocketman and still refusing to bless same-sex marriages

Elton John slams Vatican for “investing millions” in Rocketman and still refusing to bless same-sex marriages

Elton John has reacted to the Vatican’s controversial stance on gay marriage.

With the approval of Pope Francis, the Vatican released a decree stating that gay members of the faith are welcome but same-sex unions can’t be blessed. The legendary musician slammed this position on LGBT unions, tweeting Monday about the “hypocrisy” of the religious organization after it reportedly invested over $1 million in John’s flamboyantly costumed, queer-themed 2019 biopic Rocketman, which he executive-produced alongside his husband, David Furnish.

“How can the Vatican refuse to bless gay marriages because they ‘are sin’, yet happily make a profit from investing millions in Rocketman – a film which celebrates my finding happiness from my marriage to David??” John tweeted, referencing the Taron Egerton-starring film’s plot following his decades-long relationship with Furnish — and its inclusion of a gay male sex scene.

According to The Daily Beast investigations, the Vatican reportedly invested large sums of money into the production, with the former citing $1.2 million going towards financing Rocketman ahead of its release.

The 73-year-old’s statement comes after the Vatican’s official Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith announced Monday that its priests couldn’t bless same-sex unions because they’re “not licit”, but that the church should still be welcoming to gay people “with respect and sensitivity” despite not endorsing their partnerships.

“It is necessary that what is blessed be objectively and positively ordered to receive and express grace, according to the designs of God inscribed in creation,” the Vatican’s decree reads.

It goes further to say, “It is not licit to impart a blessing on relationships, or partnerships, even stable, that involve sexual activity outside of marriage, as is the case of the unions between persons of the same sex. The presence in such relationships of positive elements, which are in themselves to be valued and appreciated, 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.”

Though Rocketman was celebrated in most parts of the world — winning John and longtime collaborator Bernie Taupin an Oscar for Best Original Song atop grossing $195 million globally — its gay content also generated controversy in Russia and Samoa.

Samoa’s principal censor, Leiataua Niuapu Faaui, made the decision on the basis of the film’s themes clashing with the country’s “culture and our Christian beliefs,” while the film reportedly screened in Russia with its gay romance scenes heavily edited.

“We reject in the strongest possible terms the decision to pander to local laws and censor Rocketman for the Russian market, a move we were unaware of until today,” John and the filmmakers said in a joint statement at the time. “Paramount Pictures have been brave and bold partners in allowing us to create a film which is a true representation of Elton’s extraordinary life, warts and all. That the local distributor has edited out certain scenes, denying the audience the opportunity to see the film as it was intended is a sad reflection of the divided world we still live in and how it can still be so cruelly unaccepting of the love between two people.”

Elton John however wasn’t the only gay artiste who called out the Vatican for this stance on LGBT unions. Actor Billy Eichner expressed his thoughts loud and clear when he proposed to Dan Levy over Twitter.

Initially, Eichner tweeted about his distaste for the statement by writing, “Can’t a nice gay gentleman like myself just be able to sit here and enjoy Glenn Close’s EIGHTH Oscar nomination without having to see this shit?” Levy responded with praise of Eichner. Specifically, he wrote, “Never been more jealous of a caption. Kudos.”

It was then that Eichner proposed with the line, “Let’s get married just to make the Pope angry!” Levy responded with two simple emojis, the image of two men standing side-by-side and a two heart emoji.

Outside of the playful thread, Eichner pointed out how the Catholic Church has abused LGBTQ people for ages. “On a serious note, to everyone who goes out of their way to talk about how “cool” this pope is…NO. The Catholic Church has abused the LGBTQ community for MILLENIA. So, go to church if you need to I guess but THAT’s what you’re enabling. Bye!”

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