State funerals in Spain stay Catholic

7th July 2008, Comments 0 comments

The Socialists will work towards the progressive disappearance of religious symbols instead of implementing drastic changes.

7 July 2008

MADRID - There was another issue on which the 37th Socialist Party convention failed to take a step forward, and that was state funerals.

During the party's last term in office, the government suggested that the Catholic Church might soon no longer be allowed to officiate at state funerals, on grounds that Spain is officially a secular nation.

However, when a party branch known as Izquierda Socialista tabled a motion last Saturday to eliminate religious liturgy from state funerals, it was struck down on the argument that "secularism has no alternative liturgy," according to Ramón Jáuregui, a party leader who added that the Socialists will work towards the progressive disappearance of religious symbols such as crosses from public schools and institutions.

However, none of these measures will be forced on people, he added, and reforms to the Religious Freedom Law will be undertaken "without creating division".

"Nobody can expect a country to change from one day to the next," Jáuregui said.

[El Pais / Expatica]

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