Pope urges bishops to be firm on marriage
Pope John Paul II has focused on the crisis of the family in an address to visiting Argentine bishops, urging that the truth about marriage be taught with "pastoral firmness".
"We are witnessing a current, very widespread in some parts, which tends to weaken its true nature," the Pope warned. "At times, Catholic faithful themselves, for different reasons, do not take recourse to the sacrament of marriage to begin their union in love."
The Holy Father said "the extent of the crisis of marriage and the family must not lead to dejection or negligence on the contrary, it must impel us to proclaim with pastoral firmness, as an authentic service to the family and society, the truth about marriage and the family established by God."
"To cease to do this would be a serious pastoral omission that would lead believers into error, as well as those who have the grave responsibility to make decisions for the common good of the nation," the Pope warned.
He added that it is not a question "only for Catholics, but for all men and women without distinction, because marriage and the family are an irreplaceable good of society."
7 Mar 2002