Archbishop Desmond Tutu passed away in Cape Town, South Africa, on Dec. 26 at the age of 90. In 1984, he won the Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of his efforts to bring about a peaceful transition to a society with equal rights for all.
Pope Francis was saddened to learn of Tutu's death and sent "heartfelt condolences to his family and loved ones," Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Vatican secretary of state, said in a Dec. 26 message.
"Mindful of his service to the Gospel through the promotion of racial equality and reconciliation in his native South Africa, His Holiness commends his soul to the loving mercy of almighty God," it said.
Gays had a very special relationship in Tutu's ecumenical and interfaith movements for social justice in South Africa and beyond. Clearly, the departed was a man of God,and never doubted God's word.
Pope Francis wrote in his papal letter, "Fratelli Tutti, on Fraternity and Social Friendship," that Tutu was among the people who inspired him.
Tutu was a prisoner of hope, and always promoted the light of the Gospels in both his life, and the movement he guided. A man of love and peace, he always recognized God's children in the marginalization process of bigotry. He stood for social justice for all, regardless of one's skin color, sexual orientation or gender.
The Rainbow Sash Movement prays his soul will rest in peace, and that his loved ones will hold him in love.
Rainbow Sash Movement (LGBTQAI Roman Catholics)