Pope says civilisations must protect human dignity
In a message to the first Meeting of Civilisations being held in Turkey, Pope Benedict XVI has said that the dignity of the person must be at the heart of every civilisation.
Zenit reports that the Pope's words of "reconciliation and peace," read in the meeting by Archbishop Pier Luigi Celata, secretary of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, were applauded by Turkish Prime Minister Tayyp Erdogan, at the opening of the meeting Sunday. The event in the city of Antioch continues until Friday.
Attending the unprecedented meeting are representatives of various religions, some 1000 experts in theology, history and sociology, as well as 40 ambassadors.
In his message, sent by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Angelo Sodano and reported on Vatican Radio, the Holy Father invited the participants to promote "from the spiritual and cultural heritage of each one, the values that recognise the central character of the person and that promote understanding, respect and peace."
This attitude, says the papal message, is especially urgent in an era of globalization, "in which the danger might exist that fundamental human values are sacrificed in the name of progress or are lost because of destructive secular ideologies."
Civilisations Must Protect Human Dignity, Says Pope (Zenit 27/9/05)
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Benedict XVI General Audience - text (28/9/05)
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Pope's General Audience (Vatican Radio English Features 28/9/05, audio - requires Real Player)
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29 Sep 2005