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Changing understanding of marriage will alter Europe's identity, Pope tells Hungarian envoy

December 02, 2010

Meeting on December 2 with a new ambassador from Hungary to the Holy See, Pope Benedict XVI spoke about the importance of preserving marriage and family life.

In his remarks to the new ambassador, Gabor Gyorivanyi, the Pope spoke about the true meaning of religious freedom in a secular world, and the historical role that Hungary has played as a bridge linking Eastern and Western Europe. Then, taking note of the fact that Hungary will assume the rotating presidency of the European Union next year, the Pontiff spoke specifically about marriage and the family.

“Europe would no longer be Europe” if the understanding of marriage changed, the Pope said. "Marriage and the family constitute an essential foundation for the healthy development of civil society, of countries and of peoples.” He warned the Hungarian envoy that the Catholic Church “cannot approve legislative initiatives which involve the acceptance of alternative models of marriage and family life, as these would contribute to weakening the principles of natural law and thus to relativizing legislation and society's understanding of values.”


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  • Posted by: frjpharrington3912 - Dec. 04, 2010 5:06 PM ET USA

    The increasing marginalization of the Church in society is taking place simultaneously with the increasing secularization of civil government. Aware of this trend the Holy Father has been vigilant in speaking out about the integral role the Church is called to fulfill in promoting the common good of society. The common good is concerned foremoste with the good of the family which is the basic cell of society which the larger society outside needs and draws on for its own well being.