Pope Francis Met Privately With Same-Sex Couple Before Kim Davis' Visit

  • by: Alan Duke

Pope Francis Kim Davis.jpg

Pope Francis met with a same-sex couple just before his "brief meeting" with the Kentucky county clerk who refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, CNN reported Friday.

The revelation that the gay couple had a private meeting with the pope came just hours after the Vatican distanced itself from Kim Davis, insisting that her meeting with the pope was not a papal endorsement of her defiance of the Supreme Court ruling making same-sex marriage legal in the United States.

One of the two men was an old friend of Pope Francis from Argentina, CNN reported. "Yayo Grassi, an openly gay man, brought his partner, Iwan, as well several other friends to the Vatican Embassy on September 23 for a brief visit with the Pope. A video of the meeting shows Grassi and Francis greeting each other with a warm hug."

"Three weeks before the trip, he called me on the phone and said he would love to give me a hug," Grassi told CNN.

The Vatican issued an unusual statement to distance itself from Davis, who has been using her meeting with Pope Francis to suggest Pope Francis supported her refusal to issue same-sex marriage licenses.

The "brief meeting" during the pope's visit to Washington, D.C., was not a "real audience" with the pope and was only one of dozens "due to the Pope's characteristic kindness and availability."

A anti-same-sex marriage group that provides public relations and legal help for Davis quoted the pope telling Davis "Thank you for your courage" and "Stay strong" during a 10-minute meeting at the Vatican's embassy in Washington, D.C., Thursday September 24, 2015.

Davis told ABC News meeting the pope gave her a renewed sense of purpose. "I was crying. I had tears coming out of my eyes," she said. "I'm just a nobody, so it was really humbling to think he would want to meet or know me."

She spent six days in jail last month after being found in contempt of court for defying a judge's order to issue same-sex marriage licenses to comply with June's Supreme Court order on the matter. Davis cited "God's authority" in her refusal.

Lead Stories' Trendolizer constantly sours social nets for the latest news about Pope Francis and same-sex marriage. Scroll down to see the latest.

  Alan Duke

Editor-in-Chief Alan Duke co-founded Lead Stories after ending a 26-year career with CNN, where he mainly covered entertainment, current affairs and politics. Duke closely covered domestic terrorism cases for CNN, including the Oklahoma City federal building bombing, the UNABOMBER and search for Southeast bomber Eric Robert Rudolph. CNN moved Duke to Los Angeles in 2009 to cover the entertainment beat. Duke also co-hosted a daily podcast with former HLN host Nancy Grace, "Crime Stories with Nancy Grace" and hosted the podcast series "Stan Lee's World: His Real Life Battle with Heroes & Villains." You'll also see Duke in many news documentaries, including on the Reelz channel, CNN and HLN.

Read more about or contact Alan Duke

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