Pope urges French MPs to shun legislative 'fashions'

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VATICAN CITY: Pope Francis urged French members of parliament to shun “fashions” in legislation, a day after the pontiff spoke out against gay marriage.

“Your role... consists in proposing laws, amending them or even repealing  them,” the pontiff told a delegation of MPs from France, adding that it is 
 
“necessary... to inject them with something more, a spirit, a soul which does  not just reflect fashions and ideas of the time.”    The laws should “provide the indispensable quality which raises and  ennobles the human person,” the 76-year-old said.
 
On Friday, Francis praised the head of the Anglican Church, Justin Welby,  for his stance against gay marriage.
 
Francis urged Welby to continue proclaiming “the importance of the  institution of the family built on marriage, a value that you yourself have had  occasion to recall recently.”    
 
France, which celebrated its first official gay marriage at the end of May  after months of sometimes violent protests, “is a nation towards which the eyes  of the world often turn,” he told the lawmakers.
 
“The lay principle which governs relations between the French state and  various religious faiths should not in itself mean a hostility to religious  reality, or an exclusion of religions from the social arena and the debates  which animate it,” the pontiff said.
 
The Argentine said the Church “wants to make a specific contribution to the  deep questions which lie behind a more complete vision of the person and his  destiny.”    
 
It hopes to make such a contribution not only on “anthropological or  societal” issues but also “in political, economic and cultural domains,” he  said. - AFP

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