.- In his address to Pope Benedict XVI during the 24th full assembly of the Pontifical Council for the Laity, Cardinal Stanislaw Rylko, president of the dicastery, said, “The Church does not identify herself with any one political party or system,” but “she appreciates the work of those who dedicate themselves to the service of the common good and assume the weight of these responsibilities.”
Cardinal Rylko said the Church sees the lay faithful's involvement in politics as “a noble vocation” that is “a great expression of charity.”
“Lay Christians involved in the public life should receive the necessary formation to be able to bear witness to their faith in Jesus Christ with courageous coherence because it is by being faithful to themselves, to their own baptismal identity, that the can truly bring about a renewal in political life,” Cardinal Rylko said.
In commenting on the call of the Holy Father to reach out to the new generation of Catholic politicians, the cardinal said, “Today it is truly urgent that politics regain its own soul, thus recovering the meaning of service to the common good, rebuilding a moral sensitivity and a solid foundation of shared values, promoting above all the concept of a truly open secularism that is not hostile to God or fearful of allowing him to enter public life.”
The task includes “defending the human person, his dignity, his transcendent vocation and his inalienable rights, rooted in the natural law and thus non-negotiable,” he stated.
At the conclusion of his remarks Cardinal Rylko announced that the Congress of Lay Asian Catholics would take place August 31-September 5.