Pope Francis declares support for civil union laws for same-sex couples in a new documentary. Though the Catholic Church is officially against marriage equality, Francis has long supported the LGBTQ+ community in his own way. In 2013, he made news for saying “who am I to judge” when asked about gays in the church.

The documentary, “Francesco,” premiered Wednesday in Rome and will air later in the United States. The pope gave an interview to the filmmaker, Evgeny Afineevsky, saying that “homosexual people have the right to be in a family. They are children of God. You can’t kick someone out of a family, nor make their life miserable for this. What we have to have is a civil union law; that way they are legally covered.”

While serving as archbishop of Buenos Aires, Francis endorsed civil unions for gay couples as an alternative to same-sex marriages. However, he had never come out publicly in favor of civil unions as pope.

Photo: Vatican News