2014-05-09 17:08:49

Pope urges UN to make development accessible to the poor

May 09, 2014 - Pope Francis on Friday encouraged the United Nations system in its efforts towards equitable ‎economic and social progress aimed at the integral human development of all the world’s peoples, through ‎the practice of a shared ideal of fraternity and solidarity, especially with regard to the ‎poorest and those ‎most excluded. He made the remark to some 70 participants in the biennial meeting of the UN System ‎Chief Executives Board for Coordination (CEB), who were led by UN Secretary-General Ban ki-Moon. ‎In the UN’s great efforts to ‎ensure world peace, respect for human dignity, the protection of ‎persons, ‎especially the poorest and ‎most vulnerable, and harmonious economic and social development, ‎Pope ‎Francis offered the UN executives as model the figure of the rich tax collector ‎Zacchaeus in the ‎Gospel. “The account of Jesus and Zacchaeus,” the Pope explained, “teaches us that above and beyond ‎economic and social ‎systems ‎and theories, there will always be a need to promote generous, effective ‎and practical ‎openness to the ‎needs of others.” The Argentine Pope urged the world body to promote ‎an ``ethical mobilization'' of solidarity with the ‎poor and a new spirit of generosity that also addresses ‎the root causes of poverty and hunger. ‎ He called for ``the legitimate redistribution of economic ‎benefits by the state, as well as indispensable ‎cooperation between the private sector and civil society.'' ‎ ‎The Jesuit Pope also pointed to the Church’s news saints, John XXIII and John Paul II saying they ‎‎“inspire us by their passionate ‎concern for integral human development and for understanding between ‎peoples.”‎
Speaking about the progress towards the Millennium Development Goals, especially in terms of ‎education and the ‎decrease in extreme ‎poverty,‎ the Pope urged the world body to ‎press forward to ‎achieve ‎even ‎more, making them accessible to an important part of humanity that does not share in the ‎benefits of progress and is in ‎fact ‎relegated to the status of second-class citizens. The work of ‎sustainable human and social development specifically involves challenging all forms of ‎injustice ‎and resisting the “economy ‎of ‎exclusion”, the “throwaway culture” and the “culture of death” ‎which ‎nowadays sadly ‎risk ‎becoming passively accepted‎ , the Pope added.

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