.- Reflecting on laicism and religion in France, Archbishop Andre Lacrampe of BesanÃ§on and president of the National Council for Solidarity, said laicism implies neutrality and not exclusion or ignorance by the State in regards to the Church. âThe profound meaning of laicism in France means that the State is neutral with respect to the Church, but its neutrality does not mean ignorance or exclusion, but rather non-interference in Church matters,â the archbishop said during a presentation at the 14th Conference on the Churchâs Social Doctrine, held in Madrid and organized by the Bishopsâ Conference of Spain.
During his conference, Archbishop Lacrampe analyzed âFrench laicism and the evolution of relations between France and the Church during the last 100 years.â
He distinguished between âlaicism as a concrete socio-political regimenâ and âlaicism as a philosophical system closed to any spiritual dimension.â
The Conference, commemorating the 40th anniversary of the document Gaudium et spes of the Second Vatican Council, took place at a moment when laicist tendencies are gaining influence in Spain in an attempt to restrict the presence of the Church to the private sector.