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Pope Francis hosts group of trans women for lunch at The Vatican: ‘People often forget about us’

"I never would have expected this! I am very happy," one of the women said

By Charlotte Manning

Pope Francis in 2014 on a pastoral visit to Korea
Pope Francis hosted guests over the weekend (Image: Wiki Commons)

Pope Francis has included a group of trans women at a recent lunch, who were helped during the Covid 19 pandemic. 

The Pope hosted more than 1,000 people on Sunday (19 November) to mark the Catholic Church’s World Day of the Poor.

The head of the Catholic Church formed a bond with Torvaianica’s trans community during Italy’s strict Covid lockdown.

Sex workers showed up at the church of Rev. Andrea Conocchia, when they lost all source of income. 

“It’s beautiful for us trans [women] because we are forgotten”

The Vatican then provided those in need with basic food, medicine, and hygiene supplies, as well as vaccines. 

In a video shared by Associated Press, women travelled via coach to from the community to Rome to have lunch with him at The Vatican. 

One of theattendees, named Mirta Rios, shared: “I was not expecting this. I never would have expected this! I am very happy. 

“Thanks to God and to him and all those who helped is un the pandemic when we were in bad shape. On top of that, he is Argentinian like me!”

Another guest, named Jessica Quintero, added: “It’s beautiful for us trans [women] because we are forgotten. 

“It’s a great pleasure, and a moral boost for us because people often forget about us.”

Two of the trans women, Claudia Vittoria Salas and Laura Esquival, were amongst those who were given a seat at the Pope’s table.

“I was not expecting this, I never would have expected this! I am very happy”

It comes as the latest display from Pope Francis of his support for the LGBTQ+ community. 

Earlier this month, it was confirmed trans people will be able to act as godparents, witnesses at religious weddings and receive baptisms.

In June, the Pope told ayoung transgender person, “God loves us all,” earlier this summer, while he spoke to a group of young people in an episode of The Vatican’s podcast series titled Popecast

He listened to several stories including from someone called Giona. They detailed being “torn by the dichotomy between [their Catholic] faith and transgender identity.”

Pope Francis replied: “The Lord always walks with us… Even if we are sinners, he draws near to help us. 

“The Lord loves us as we are, this is God’s crazy love.”

Since being appointed as the head of the Catholic Church in 2013, Pope Francis has adopted a (comparatively) more inclusive stance towards LGBTQ people than his predecessors. 

In 2017 he went so far as to say that the Church should “apologise” to gay people.