Pope Benedict XVI on Saturday called on
the French Roman Catholic Church to make its opposition to gay
The Socialist government of Francois
Hollande earlier this month sent a proposed plan to legalize marriage
and adoption for gay couples to lawmakers for debate. The National
Assembly is expected to start examining the legislation in January,
and a vote could come by mid-2013.
Benedict urged French bishops visiting
the Vatican on Saturday to speak out on social issues.
“Your nation has a long and rich
Christian history that cannot be ignored or diminished,” the
“In the important debates in society
the voice of the Church must make itself heard tirelessly and with
Benedict told the bishops to not be
“afraid” of spreading Christian teachings.
Earlier this month, the Vatican
defended limiting marriage to heterosexual couples, calling the union
“an achievement of civilization.”
A Vatican spokesman went further in a
Vatican Radio editorial, taunting marriage equality proponents to
push for the legal recognition of plural relationships.
march against gay marriage in France.)