Pope Extols Families That Go Against the Current

Angelus Address Focuses on Jesus' Teaching on Marriage

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VATICAN CITY, OCT. 8, 2006 (Zenit.org).- The world needs families that go against the current of cultural fashions inspired by hedonism and relativism, says Benedict XVI.



Before reciting the midday Angelus from the window of his study today, with thousands of people gathered in St. Peter's Square, the Pope also appealed to leaders of public life to support the family.

The topic chosen by the Holy Father for his address was inspired by the Gospel passage of the day's liturgy, in which Jesus gives his vision on indissoluble marriage: "What God has joined together, no human being must separate."

"May Christian spouses, aware of the grace received, build a family open to life and capable of facing together the numerous and complicated challenges of our time," exhorted Benedict XVI. "Their testimony is particularly necessary today.

"Families are needed that do not let themselves be drawn by modern cultural currents inspired by hedonism and relativism, and that are willing to realize their mission in the Church and in society with generous dedication."

Amid the applause from those in St. Peter's Square, he quoted Pope John Paul II who described Christian spouses as "authentic 'missionaries' of love and life."

At the same time, Benedict XVI invoked divine assistance for families, "especially those going through difficulties."

Speaking in French, after praying the Angelus, the Holy Father appealed to those responsible for public life, to "support, for the good of all, the conjugal and family institution, fundamental for society."