Rome, Italy (AP) The Vatican is considering a new form of marriage between two Catholics who are Catholic and who have different religious beliefs.
The new form, which would be accepted by both the Vatican and the Italian state, is in line with Vatican guidelines, which are being interpreted by Vatican officials.
Pope Francis has said he is open to changing Catholic teaching on marriage and other matters, and is not opposed to allowing mixed marriages between Catholics and non-Catholics.
However, Vatican spokesman Greg Burke said that the church’s position was still “at the very beginning of the discussion” about whether to accept the proposal.
Pope Benedict XVI’s successor is also expected to approve the proposal, which has already been approved by the Italian bishops’ conference.
Pope Pius XII issued a pastoral letter in 1981 to Catholic priests and bishops who were gay.
It allowed Catholics to marry if they wanted to.
Burke said he could not comment on the pope’s decision to change his mind.
The Vatican has long been at odds with other Catholic churches, such as the Roman Catholic Church, that have a more lenient stance on gay marriage.
The Italian Catholic bishops’ convention is preparing a proposal to change the definition of marriage.
It has already called for allowing mixed unions between Catholics with same-sex partners and for the same-gender union of Catholics with different-sex spouses.