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Pope gives support to Zimbabwe bishops


Pope Benedict XVI has expressed public support to the bishops of Zimbabwe in their work to promote reconciliation and justice in their country.

Zenit reports that the Holy Father addressed the situation of Church in Zimbabwe when he received the bishops on Saturday, at the end of their five-yearly visit to the Vatican.

"The recent elections in Zimbabwe have laid the basis for what I trust will be a new beginning in the process of national reconciliation and the moral rebuilding of society," said the Pope.

"I appreciate the significant contribution to the electoral process which you offered to the Catholic faithful and to all your fellow citizens in your Joint Pastoral Statement published last year," he added.

"As you rightly noted in that statement, responsibility for the common good demands that all members of the body politic work together in laying firm moral and spiritual foundations for the future of the nation," explained Benedict XVI.

The bishops called on the government to uphold freedom of the press while the media were asked to be watchdogs of the human rights that are enshrined in the national constitution, and to be fair and truthful in their reporting.

The Pope also supported the recent pastoral letter "The Cry of the Poor," published by the bishops of Zimbabwe.

In the document, the Bishops' Conference decried a government program that has led to the demolition of shantytowns, and left innumerable families homeless.

SOURCE
Benedict XVI Encourages Zimbabwe's Bishops (Zenit 3/7/05)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
The Cry of the Poor (Pastoral letter of the Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops' Conference, June 2005 - CAFOD website)

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5 Jul 2005