That's not quite an endorsement of the practice. And it's a far cry from supporting same-sex marriage; the pontiff again repeated the view "marriage is between a man and a woman."
Still, the pope's welcoming stance toward legal same-sex unions follows in his attempts to make the church more inclusive. In 2013, Francis said he believed Catholic leaders had become too focused on same-sex marriage and abortion. He also made headlines by saying he was in no position to judge gay priests, a remark which led in part to his being named The Advocate's Person of the Year.
During this week's interview, Francis said that some nations and states adopt civil unions "to regularize different situations of living together" and referred specifically to access to healthcare and stronger economic equality.
"We have to look at the different cases and evaluate them in their variety," he said.
In that spirit, let's evaluate some other news:
After all the talk of how athletes could possibly survive having a gay teammate in the locker room, the Los Angeles Galaxy has given us an answer: They'll just be inclusive and non-normative. Imagine.
The Walt Disney Company won't be giving any more money to the Boy Scouts due to the organization's ban on LGBT leaders. Or, as Variety might put it: The Mouse House wants the Boy Scouts to "Let It Go."