Cardinal says tourism must respect persons and cultures

Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Angelo Sodano has warned that the growth of world tourism must be accompanied by an upholding of respect for individual cultures and faiths.

In a letter sent in the name of the Holy Father to Cardinal Stephen Fumio Hamao, president of the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Immigrant Peoples, Cardinal Sodano added that Christian communities in the host countries should be encouraged to "share the life of Christ with tourists".

Catholic News Agency reports that the letter was written for the occasion of the World Day of Tourism, scheduled for 27 September. The theme of the day is: "Travel and Transport, from the imaginary world of Jules Verne to the reality of the 21st Century."

In his letter, Cardinal Sodano recalls how the "real or imaginary" journeys of the French author "in fact represented an invitation to consult the new geographical atlas and a challenge to human responsibility in facing limits that could no longer be concealed."

"At the end of the 19th century," the cardinal said, "in his own incredible voyage, Verne overcame these limits which were imposed by the dominant culture and by a vision exclusively centered on Western Europe."

He wrote that, "today too there are obstacles to overcome if we wish tourism, the fruit of travel and transport, to be open to everyone. New and unexplored opportunities for travel with ever more modern and faster means can make tourism a providential occasion to share the goods of the earth and of culture."

Cardinal Sodano warns that tourism must respect persons and cultures (Catholic News Agency 20/7/05)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Vatican Secretariat of State

Tourism not for hedonism, says Pope (CathNews 27/6/03)
Vatican observer warns against "lawless" sex tourism (CathNews 8/4/03)
Working towards code of tourist ethics (CathNews 15/4/99)

Like Jules Verne, overcome limits of the dominant culture (Vatican Information Service 20/7/05)

21 Jul 2005