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Pope Francis meets French parliamentarians



Vatican City, 15 June 2013: ‘This meeting is, for me, an opportunity to highlight the relationship of trust which, on the whole, exists in France between leaders of public life and those of the Catholic Church, be it in at a national level, be it at a regional or local level, said Pope Francis on Saturday morning while meeting with members of the French Senate and National Assembly.

The principles of secularism which governs the relations between the French State and the various religious denominations, said the Pontiff, should not imply that there is a hostility towards the religious reality, or an exclusion of religions from the social sphere and the debates which enliven them. One can rejoice in the fact that French society is rediscovering proposals made by the Church, which, among other things, offer a certain vision of the person and his or her dignity in light of the common good. The Church desires, therefore, to offer its own particular contribution to the deeper questions which demand a more complete vision of the person and his or her destiny, of society and its destiny. This contribution is collocated not only in the anthropological and social sphere, but in political, economic, and cultural spheres as well, added Pope Francis.

Exhorting the parliamentarians, the Pontiff said, ‘as elected officials from a nation towards which the eyes of the world are often turned, I believe it to be your responsibility to contribute in an effective and consistent way towards improving the lives of your citizens whom you know through the numerous local contacts you cultivate, and which help you to better know their needs. Your duty is certainly technical and juridical, and involves proposing, amending and abolishing legislation. However, it is also necessary to instill something extra in them, I would say a spirit, a soul, that does not limit itself to reflecting the modalities and ideas of the moment, but which also confers upon them the indispensable quality that elevates and dignifies the human person.

He concluded by extending his warmest encouragement in fulfilling their mission, always seeking the good of the person and promoting fraternity in your country.
Source: VR Sedoc




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