Defending traditional marriage is not an expression of backward thinking, said Pope Benedict, but of values essential to the future of humanity.
“Marriage and the family are institutions that must be promoted and defended from every possible misrepresentation of their true nature, since whatever is injurious to them is injurious to society itself,” he said.
The pope made his remarks Sept. 21 in a talk to French bishops visiting Rome.
The family, which is the foundation of society, “is threatened in many places by a faulty conception of human nature,” the pope told the group of 32 bishops.
“Defending life and the family in society isn’t retrograde, rather it’s prophetic,” he said, because it helps “promote those values that permit the full development of the human person.”