Pope Francis addresses Congress.

Pope Francis addresses Congress.

Pope Francis, in off-the-cuff remarks made after his formal address at a pastoral conference of the Diocese of Rome, said most of today’s marriages are “nulli,” meaning invalid, because the couples enter it with the idea they can separate or divorce any time they want.

But in the eyes of God, marriage is a sacred union that is “indissoluble,” he said, NBC News reported.

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“Young people say ‘for life,’ but they do not know what that means,” Francis said, adding that the philosophy of a temporary union that can be ended if it becomes an “inconvenience” therefore makes their marriages “nulli” from the start – the Italian word for “baseless” or “invalid.”

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He also said that when he was archbishop in Argentina, he outright refused to approve marriages of men to pregnant women because he saw those unions as forced and believed the couples were not entering the partnerships based on their own free will.

In his speech, he spoke of the dangers of “separatism” and individualism on the family.

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