Fact Check

Did the Pope Declare Fornication Is No Longer a Sin?

"What were we even thinking?" the Patriarch of the West asked rhetorically.

Published Mar 12, 2015

 (giulio napolitano/Shutterstock.com)
Image Via giulio napolitano/Shutterstock.com
Pope Francis has declared that fornication is no longer a sin.

On 4 March 2015, the web site The Late O'clock News published an article titled "Pope declares fornication no longer a sin." The article posited that Pope Francis had declared sexual acts once relegated to the area of sinfulness to be no longer forbidden by the church, and it included quotes attributed to the pope regarding the reclassification of sexual acts that were formerly considered sins:

Just when you thought he couldn't get any cooler, the Holy Father announced today at his Wednesday General Audience that, last night, he had his first wet dream in 65 years and it was life-changing. In fact, the wet dream was so glorious that he has used his divine authority as Pope to declare that fornication is no longer a sin.

"What were we even thinking?" the Patriarch of the West asked rhetorically to the audience, all of whom were crying tears of joy, washing away all their years of Catholic guilt. "I've sat in that hot wooden box for years, heard you all confess the same sins over and over. Masturbation, fornication, adultery and lesbian porn! Now I know what the fuss was all about!"

While Pope Francis has espoused some surprisingly progressive ideas, the article and its quotes were wholly fabricated. A disclaimer on the Late O'clock News web site explains that:

The Late O'clock News is a news and political satire web publication, which may or may not use real names, often in semi-real or mostly fictitious ways. All news articles contained within thelateoclocknews.com are fiction, and presumably fake news.

Any resemblance to the truth is purely coincidental, except for all references to politicians and/or celebrities, in which case they are based on real people, but still based almost entirely in fiction.

Dan Evon is a former writer for Snopes.