Irish PM calls for ‘new relationship’ between church and state during pope’s visit

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Irish PM calls for ‘new relationship’ between church and state during pope’s visit

Leo Varadkar’s speech focused on the Catholic church’s failings over child sexual abuse

The Irish prime minister has called for a new relationship between church and state in which religion is no longer at the centre of society, as the pope made his first visit to Ireland on Saturday.

In a blistering speech focusing on the failings of the church, delivered in the presence of Pope Francis, Leo Varadkar, the taoiseach, said a new relationship was needed that reflected the modern country Ireland had become and learned from “our shared mistakes”.

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