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Pell opposes IR laws, supports same-sex union ban

Sydney's Cardinal George Pell has weighed in on the debates over the Federal Government's WorkChoices laws and the ACT's attempt to recognise civil unions.

The Age reports that Cardinal Pell has added his voice to the industrial relations (IR) debate, saying he has serious concerns about the Government's WorkChoices package.

"I don't particularly like the new IR laws because I'm frightened they could be used to force down minimum wages," Cardinal Pell said.

The Cardinal's comments are likely to be used by Labor when parliament resumes today ahead of a six-week winter break.

While disagreeing with the Federal Government over IR changes, Cardinal Pell has applauded its decision to overturn an ACT law that would have recognised gay and lesbian relationships.

According to ABC Canberra, Cardinal Pell said the Government's intervention was the right decision as the ACT law would have undermined the traditional status of marriage.

"I'm not in favour of homosexual marriages because I think that it threatens the status of a marriage between a man and a woman," he said.

"That's undoubtedly the best protection for the spouses and the best protection for the next generation."

Also at the weekend, Cardinal Pell led thousands of Catholics marchers for the annual Feast of Corpus Christi march which brought traffic in Sydney's CBD to a halt.

News Ltd reports that the 10,000-strong crowd yesterday marched from St Patrick's Cathedral in the city's north to St Mary's Cathedral near Hyde Park.

Auxiliary Bishop of Sydney Julian Porteous likened the march to the support being afforded the Socceroos in their match with Brazil this morning.

"Just as fans will gather to demonstrate their support for the Socceroos in the Brazil versus Australia match, singing and chanting in the spirit of the game, so Catholics throughout Sydney will gather to celebrate their faith in Jesus Christ ... singing in his honour," Mr Bishop said.

The march was the second of its kind to be held in Sydney, and will be continued annually until World Youth Day in 2008.

Pell opposes Work Choices (The Age 19/6/06)
Cardinal Pell applauds civil unions defeat (ABC Canberra 19/6/06)
Catholic march closes city streets ( 18/6/06)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Faith, works and industrial relations (ABC Religion Report 17/8/05)

Brennan foreshadows lower minimum wage (CathNews 2/5/06)
Pell voices wages concerns (CathNews 4/7/05)

PM refuses public debate with Beazley on AWAs (The Australian 19/6/06)
Pell warns on curtailing unions (The Age 22/6/05)


19 Jun 2006