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Vatican synod ends with divide over women deacons and LGBTQ+

By Anthony Faiola and Stefano Pitrelli

VATICAN CITY — Days before the start of the most significant Catholic gathering since the 1960s, Pope Francis dropped a theological bomb. In a reply to conservative bishops concerned about his openness to the LGBTQ+ community, the 86-year-old pope effectively said he could envision priests, on a case-by-case basis, blessing same-sex couples if those benedictions fell short of the sacrament of marriage.

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