Gay marriages ‘penalize’ natural marriage: Pope

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Pope Benedict XVI
Pope Benedict XVI

Pope Benedict XVI
Pope Benedict XVI

CATHOLIC Church’s supreme head Pope Benedict XVI told Italian politicians that the imposition of legally recognized same-sex unions ‘penalizes’ natural marriage.

The natural family, he said, made up of one man and one woman bound in marriage with their children. That is the ‘basic cell’ of society in which ‘children learn the human and Christian values that make possible constructive and peaceful coexistence.’

In an address to political, business and social leaders of the city and province of Rome and the Lazio region, he said: “The approval of forms of union that pervert the essence and end of the family, ends by penalizing all those who, not without effort, are committed to living stable affective bonds, guaranteed juridically and recognized publicly.”

The pope decried the region’s high rates of abortion and called on those politicians and leaders present to ‘support maternity concretely’, so that couples would not face financial constraints when deciding to have children and so that ‘women who are engaged in a profession the possibility of combining family and work.’

The pope said that ‘openness to life is at the center of true development.’

No form of same-sex union is recognized under Italian law, and homosexual behavior is still not widely accepted among the general population in Italy.

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