The French Cardinals, Archbishops and Bishops have decided to back the trade union stand for higher wages in the present series of strikes that are slowing production in some of France's key industries.
In a statement issued after their annual meeting in Paris last week, they pleaded for " mutual understanding and wisdom " between Government, employers and workers.
" If economic realities cannot he ignored without danger." they declared, "neither can social justice be pushed aside. And social justice demands that a man should receive for his work the living wage he needs to support his family.
" We ardently hope that the strikes which are bringing misery into many workers' homes and are seriously hampering the nation's economic lifewill be ended as quickly as possible.
" A labour dispute whose only solution lies in the wearing down of the workers leaves in its train terrible rancours that will open the way to violence."