• France's news in English
 

Pope to French bishops: fight gay marriage

Published: 21 Sep 2012 17:16 GMT+02:00

While the French government prepares to legalise homosexual marriage, Pope Benedict XVI spoke to around 30 bishops from western France, without mentioning the draft law but clearly referring to the debate around it.

During the feast of the Assumption on August 15th, France's Roman Catholic bishops invited their followers to say a prayer that was interpreted as a stand against homosexual marriage, sparking a row in France.

"Defending life and the family in society is not at all reactionary but rather prophetic because it comes back to promoting values which allow for the full blossoming of the human person, created in the image and resemblance of God," the pope said.

"We have there a true challenge to take on," he told the bishops at his summer home of Castel Gandolfo.

The family, "the foundation of social life," is threatened in many places, following a concept of human nature that has "proven defective," he said.

For the pope, "marriage and family are institutions which must be promoted and guaranteed ...."

The working visits "ad limina" by the French bishops that will continue until December are the first to be made under the pontificate of Benedict XVI.

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
France's job agency carries ad for porn stars
Did French porn star Jade Laroche, seen posing here at Cannes find a job through the Pôle Emploi? Photo: AFP

France's job agency carries ad for porn stars

Who says there are no jobs in France? France's national employment agency Pôle Emploi has been ridiculed after published a job advert from a company looking for male and female porn actors, who've "dreamed about becoming stars". Beginners are welcome to apply. READ  

French union announces plans for new rail strike
A worker at state-run rail operator SNCF lights a flare in the 2014 strikes. Photo: AFP

French union announces plans for new rail strike

A French union has announced plans to hold a one-day rail strike next week in a protest of the same issues that resulted in last year's 12-day strike, which crippled France's transport system. READ  

Frenchmen top the tables in new 'manhood' study
French men came first in the new study. Photo: Shutterstock

Frenchmen top the tables in new 'manhood' study

Frenchmen had more reason than normal to feel proud on Tuesday thanks to a new study, which found their manhoods were lengthier than those of every other nationality in the survey. But do our Gallic friends really have reason to gloat? READ  

Opinion: Commuter misery
'Paris rail network is not fit for the 21st century'
Disgruntled commuters are aiming to take Paris transport chiefs to court for the delays and disruption they face on the RER. Photo: AFP

'Paris rail network is not fit for the 21st century'

A group of disgruntled commuters are launching an unprecedented bid to sue Paris transport chiefs because they can never get to work on time. The Parisian banker leading the charge tells The Local why things have to change. READ  

U-Turn: Le Pen says yes to drink with Madonna
Marine Le Pen and Madonna may be meeting for a 'demi' soon. Photo: AFP

U-Turn: Le Pen says yes to drink with Madonna

France's National Front leader Marine Le Pen has changed her mind and accepted an offer from US pop icon Madonna to "sit down and have a drink". The pair famously fell out when one of Madonna's videos featured an image of Le Pen complete with a swastika on her forehead READ  

Presented by Greenback
Expert US tax preparation for Americans in France

Expert US tax preparation for Americans in France

If you dread filing your US expat taxes each year, you aren’t alone. But Greenback Expat Tax Services can prepare your taxes efficiently, accurately and at a fair, honest price. READ  

France probes Channel shipwreck mystery
The Bugaled Breizh wreck in July 2004. Photo: Marcel Mochet/AFP

France probes Channel shipwreck mystery

A French court on Tuesday began a probe into the case of a mysterious shipwreck 11 years ago that the families of the five victims believe was caused by a Nato submarine. READ  

France and Europe
French among Europe's most disgruntled with EU
The French are not feeling very positive towards the EU right now. Photo: AFP

French among Europe's most disgruntled with EU

France's economic woes have left the French gloomy about the EU, with more people unhappy with its leadership than in most other member states across Europe, a new survey has revealed. READ  

Appeal in France to identify lost children
These two children were found by a homeless man wandering around Nice train station. Photo: AFP

Appeal in France to identify lost children

Authorities in the southern French city of Nice have launched an urgent witness appeal to try to identify two children found wandering around a train station by a homeless man last week. READ  

France's most disputed building projects
The ambitious Europa City shopping centre is just one of the projects that has provoked opposition from environmentalists. Photo: Europa City

France's most disputed building projects

They've provoked protests, violent riots and even deaths. From planes and trains to 1,000 cows, here's a look at some of the highly contentious engineering projects in France right now. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Society
Who are these two children found by a homeless man in France?
Sponsored Article
Expert US tax preparation for Americans in France
National
From planes to 1,000 cows - France's most controversial building projects
National
Time to move home? Pyrenees hamlet cut off after massive mudslide
Sponsored Article
Tourist or lifer: what sort of expat are you?
National
Over 200 skeletons found in mass grave under Paris supermarket
Culture
Madonna has compared France and Europe to Nazi Germany
Culture
Are you also unimpressed by your French boss?
National
UK councillor blasted for 250km French commute
National
Say it with Nutella: Except the words 'lesbian', 'Muslim' and many more
Culture
Looking for something different to do in France in March? Here's 10 ideas
National
How can France enforce a no-drone zone over Paris?
Gallery
Here's how to be cool in Paris, according to Parisians
Business & Money
France or Germany: Which country really is the best one to work in?
National
Why do so many women in France smoke throughout their pregnancy?
National
VIDEO: Banned but beautiful - Paris seen through the eyes of a drone
National
Would you want this Frenchman to squeal at YOUR wedding?
National
'We're back' - Charlie Hebdo magazine returns with a bite
Society
Handsome men on the Paris Metro are unknowingly going viral
Society
What are the little things that make France so different?
National
Should we be worried about drones being flown over Paris?
Travel
Another deadly avalanche in the French Alps
National
Text offences: Why French workers need to watch out in future
Gallery
Mont-Saint-Michel cut off as 'supertide' season opens in France
Gallery
Ten great moments for France throughout Oscar history
Culture
Anglo-French marriage problems begin long before anyone says 'Oui'
Travel
'The stars are aligned': Why now is the time to buy a house in France
National
IN PICTURES: 'Supertide' brings crowds to the French coast
Gallery
French property Face-off: Two luxury chalets in the French Alps
Travel
French coastal towns are braced for the 'tide of the century'
Politics
Socialist rebel MPs are angry but not ready to topple French government
Society
France to welcome another US fast food giant
Culture
Les Entrepreneurs: How to watch Paris theatre shows in English
Culture
So where are all these swinging sex clubs in Paris?
Sport
VIDEO: 'We're racist' - Chelsea fans push black man off Paris Metro
Culture
Sex clubs touted as latest fashion in Paris
Culture
In pictures: The ever-colourful Dunkirk carnival
National
Do you worry about your French accent? Perhaps you have no need to
National
VIDEO: 'Fear and loathing' - Being a Jew in Paris
National
Why the DSK trial could spell bad news for French prostitutes
Society
The sorry recent history of anti-Semitic attacks in France
National
'Je suis Danois' - Paris shows solidarity with Copenhagen
Culture
Obituary: Louis Jourdan - The actor who embodied French elegance
National
France outraged after hundreds of Jewish tombs vandalised
Culture
Romance in France: Sex, Champagne and Je t'aime
Sponsored Article
Are you an American expat? How to face FATCA
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se