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Perspectives: Is trans godparenting Biblical?

A letter to the editor from Sara Chinakwe asks how the new Vatican guidelines on LGBTQ+ godparenting squares with Scripture.

(Image credit: Shalone Cason)

According to the article published in BCM on November 12 by Nate Tinner-Williams, the Vatican says transgender people “can be admitted to baptism in most cases, even if having transitioned, and can also serve as godparents at Catholic baptisms and as witnesses at Catholic weddings.” 

This decision was reached by consulting sources such as “Pope Francis, Pope St. John Paul II, St. Thomas Aquinas, and the Catholic Catechism.”

Vatican: Transgender people can be baptized, serve as godparents
The new document from Rome also answers similar questions concerning homosexual people and those in same-sex relationships (including marriage).

As a concerned Catholic, I am interested in this pressing issue. Should those who have questions regarding their gender identity or who have fully transitioned really be able to serve as a godparent?

This decision directly affects a young person’s faith formation. A godparent’s role is to help steward a person throughout their faith journey. If the godparent is one who has her or his own questions about identity, then how are they to appropriately counsel a young person who may have similar questions?

In Pope Francis' published work, I did not see that he consulted the Bible as a source for this decision. According to Genesis 1:27, “God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” And Jeremiah 1:5 says, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”

Yes, it is true we are called to love one another and be welcoming, but not at the expense of the degradation of our children. The Bible says in Proverbs 11:14 that “where no counsel is, the people fall: But in the multitude of counselors there is safety.” We as a church have to practice discernment and wisdom when it comes to those who have access to our children's ears. 

So where do we go from here? I am here to merely shed light on this situation. I ask you to read the Bible yourself and come to your own conclusions about what God's word says.

Sara Chinakwe is a wife, mother, educator, and award-winning author of "You Come From Greatness." She encourages women and children to pursue God’s purpose and embrace their God-given identity. She is a Cal State Stanislaus alum who has since used writing to propel God’s followers forward as they journey with Him. You can find her kingdom-building resources at

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