Catholic Culture Overview
Catholic Culture Overview
Catholic World News

Pope laments broken marriage bonds, calls for equal pay for equal work

April 29, 2015

Continuing his catechesis on the family during his April 29 general audience, Pope Francis lamented the decline of marriage and said that men and women should be compensated equally for equal work.

“Today, society is confronted with fewer marriages,” he said. “In many countries, separation of couples is increasing, while the number of children is decreasing.”

“These broken marriage bonds affect the young most of all, as they come to view marriage as something temporary,” he continued. “Perhaps there is a fear of failure which prevents men and women from trusting in Christ’s promise of grace in marriage and in the family.”

He added:

In truth we know that almost every man and woman desires a secure and lasting relationship, a stable marriage and a happy family … The most effective witness to the blessing of marriage is the good life of Christian spouses and their families. The consecration of their love by God is the font of their peace and fidelity. To make these blessings more evident to the world, the equality enjoyed by the spouses must produce new fruit – equal opportunities in the workplace; a new valuing of motherhood and fatherhood; and a greater appreciation for the openness of families to those most in need.

Stating that the “Christian seed of radical equality between men and women must bring new fruits,” he also called for support for equal pay for equal work. “Disparity is a pure scandal.”


For all current news, visit our News home page.

Further information:
Sound Off! supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a current donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

  • Posted by: rjbennett1294 - Apr. 30, 2015 4:17 AM ET USA

    And why do the young "come to view marriage as something temporary”? Could it have anything to do with the statements of men like Cardinal Kaspar, Cardinal Marx, and others whose ideas the Pope has not once condemned or even criticized?

  • Posted by: Bveritas2322 - Apr. 30, 2015 1:22 AM ET USA

    To those confused, Francis has spoken about complimentary roles numerous times. His reference to disparity is purely economic. True, there is a lie in America that women are paid less than men for equal work. They are paid equally, but this is not true in other parts of the world.

  • Posted by: TheJournalist64 - Apr. 29, 2015 8:03 PM ET USA

    The problem is deeper than this: In the 1970s and 80s, the Boomer generation in many countries exploded the number of available workers, keeping pay from its natural growth and leading to family economic troubles. So mom went to work instead of taking care of kids. One commentator has said that businesses were getting two workers for the price of one. Two working parents reduces family interaction, hence divorce & contraception.

  • Posted by: shrink - Apr. 29, 2015 12:47 PM ET USA

    Where is the biblical justification for this notion of "radical equality" in the marketplace? Where is the theological tradition for this "radical equality"? Would Francis support the Equal Rights Amendment? Just asking; one wonders.

  • Posted by: - Apr. 29, 2015 12:45 PM ET USA

    I'm confused. The very nature of marriage includes two complimentary roles of husband and wife, mother and father. Disparity seems to be a fact of these roles. Maybe I'm just old fashioned but aren't men and women different by nature? How should we understand it when the Holy Father says "disparity is pure scandal"?