Vatican Secretary of State backs UN renewal

Cardinal Angelo Sodano has told the General Assembly of the United Nations that while the UN has managed to "realise a lot of service to humanity", it has "shown signs of wearing".

CLICK HEREThe Vatican being a permanent observer to the UN, is entitled to express itself at the world summit taking place last week.

Catholic News Agency reports that Cardinal Sodano first expressed the salutations of Pope Benedict, and said he wished to give through this speech an echo for all the Catholics in the world .

He referred to the UN as "an institution that is more and more necessary. In 60 years of existence, it has managed to realize a lot at the service of humanity."

"Nevertheless," he added "it has shown signs of wearing, and needs a renewal in order to face the challenges of today. It is not a super government, but has to answer to the real expectations of the whole population." He regretted that "a lot of resolution were adopted, but not respected."

He reiterated the Vatican's Commitment for development and expressed his concerns for the problem of debt for poor countries. He called on the institution to "be attentive to the expectations of the people, rather than to the equilibrium of powers" and for a " renewed sense of responsibility for developed countries, in their duty to fight corruption, and to give equal opportunity."

Meanwhile Caritas Internationalis said rancour and politics among world leaders had turned the UN Summit into a missed opportunity for eradicating global poverty.

"Disappointment does not nearly contain the depth of anguish," said Caritas Internationalis Secretary General Duncan MacLaren. "We believe an awesome opportunity has been forfeited," he said on behalf of the Caritas Confederation, which serves people in more than 200 countries and territories.

"There had been a mutually realised sense that there could be no more excuses not to work towards the eradication of poverty and other life-saving developments through the MDGs," he said. However, several countries - led by the United States - lobbied successfully to marginalise discussion of the goals. While the MDGs were acknowledged in the 35-page final declaration - which is to be solemnly ratified on Friday - the United States ensured that any reference to specific financial commitment by developed countries was eliminated from the document.

Vatican backs goals and objectives of the summit, Cardinal Sodano to United Nations (Catholic News Agency 16/9/05)
Caritas Calls UN Summit "Opportunity Forfeited", Urges Re-Commitment (Caritas Internationalis 16/9/05)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
United Nations
The MDGs Summit (CAFOD)

Pax Christi tells Downer to fight poverty and stop arms race (CathNews 15/9/05)
Pope urges leaders to live up to UN plan (CathNews 13/9/05)

Cardinal Sodano: Yes to UN reform and an effective commitment for peace and the fight against poverty (AsiaNews.it 18/9/05)
Vatican delegate tells UN: "the poor cannot wait" (Independent Catholic News 19/9/05)
It's Time for U.N.'s "Resurrection," Says Cardinal Sodano (Zenit 15/9/05)
U.N. Summit a Disappointment, Says Caritas (Zenit 16/9/05)

19 Sep 2005