This is something I have heard many times.
Because of her faithfulness to Catholicism throughout her history, from Charlemagne to Louis XVI.
I have seen something along those line too. It shows up in some writings.
I think there may have been some historic basis for the term at one time. But really, one needs only to look at the France of today to see that it doesn’t mean very much any longer.
because with the conversion of Clovis, king of the Franks, in the 6th c., and all of his troops and followers, France or the precursor of modern France became the first nation to enter the Church wholesale as it were, and to therefore be a Christian country.
The conversion of the Franks dates to Clovis, well before Charlemagne.
France would appear to be the eldest of the extant Catholic kingdoms at the time it was popular to call France that. The claim was close to historical accuracy, although one could nitpick about there being other Catholic barbarian tribes at the time the tribal kingdom of the Franks transformed into France (the Burgundians, for example, not to mention the Celts of Britannia, and Byzantium was at the time the East Roman Empire, and Catholic, although from time to time prone to heresies; it would be hard, however, to call the Eastern Empire the daughter of the Catholic Church, while France as a kingdom was pretty much the daughter of the Church due to the unique status of Frankish kings derived from being anointed and crowned by bishops, which was not a standard thing for a barbaric king back then). The Franks initially enjoyed a unique status among the barbarian tribes in late Roman or in the post-Roman period because the others were typically followers of Arianism, whereas the Franks always remained Catholic, often fighting against the Arian tribes.
I thought Armenia was the first Christian country. Does anyone know about this?
But Armenians generally follow the Armenian Apostolic Church, an Eastern Orthodox group, not the Roman Catholic Church.
Because mother-daughter relationships are often stormy, and the relationship between France and Rome was equally tempestuous. The king of France had the pope deposed once or twice, invaded the Papal States several times, and even relocated the Holy See to a city in France for 70 years.
The relationship between France and the Church is, as they say on Facebook, complicated. :o
I don’t know if this is the correct answer but it’s definitely my favorite so far (and it does not lack verisimilitude since France was always meddling in the affairs of Rome for blatant political reasons).
As a student of history I could say that the explanaition that have been given by puzzleannie and Chevalier are the correct ones.
The idea crystallized under the experience of Charlemagne. He created a strong relationship between France and the Church because he was something as the Guardian of the Holy See. Maybe it could have given to France a primogeniture above all the other Nations. This reflected the notion of primogeniture (as a Guardian thing) that I believe that there is at the Jewish Nation. Jewishness was very inspiring at the time.
The second thing is something that could be possible, but I have not any sources about it. The first thing is that that I have learned.
It doesn’t appear to mean much to France herself, but it means a great deal to Our Lady and Our Lord if you read Catholic prophecy. They both have a great love for the “Lily”. Learn more about this in the prophecies of Marie Julie Jahenny, approved by the Church.
I read a statistic once that France was something like 70% Catholic. That’s pretty good. And it’s deeply ingrained in history; in French class, the teacher will talk about Catholicism all the time and the role it’s played in French history. Not to mention, what Catholic country doesn’t appear to be a victim of secularism, whether by it’s stereotypes or general appearance? There are practicing Catholics and “cradle” Catholics all over the world.
You know I would have liked to have responded. But the thread is so old that many of the participants are gone or outright banned.
I think there is good reason for retiring old threads like this one.
Ja’dore la France. Et Lourdes.