President's papal kiss sparks controversy in Mexico.

Position:Around The World - Brief Article

When a Roman Catholic churchgoer kisses a pope's ring, it's considered a traditional sign of veneration. When the president of Mexico does it, however, it generates a church-state controversy that dominates newspaper headlines.

In July, Pope John Paul II visited Mexico and canonized the Americas' first indigenous saint. Yet when Mexican President Vicente Fox greeted the pope by kneeling and kissing his ring, eyebrows were raised nationwide.

La Jornada newspaper, for example, ran a headline asking, "And the secular state?" Mexico, a historically secular country, has long...

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