Pope to ambassadors: Promote education, defense of life and religious freedom

“In an ever more open world, building peace through dialogue is no longer a choice but a necessity!”   – Pope Benedict XVI

On Monday morning, the Pope personally greeted roughly 180 ambasssadors from every corner of the world.  Speaking in French, Benedict XVI gave his yearly address to all members of the Holy See’s diplomatic corps.

During his speech, the Pope addressed the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine, attacks against Christians in Nigeria, as well as his apostolic trips to Mexico, Cuba and Lebanon. On a global scale, the Pope also addressed social issues like religious freedom, education and the defense of life.  He said he was dismayed by how traditionally Christian countries, mostly in the West, are easing their stance on abortion by blurring the difference between human rights and individualism.

The Pope stressed the importance of education in developing countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. But in light of the global economic crisis, he added that true progress goes far beyond good economic models.

When it comes to religious freedom, the Pope said the issue doesn’t just involve extreme cases like violence and religious attacks. The issue, says the Pope, is also seen when people, often Christians, are marginalized in society.

Read the full text of the Pope’s message at this link:


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