On Saturday Pope Benedict XVI met with leaders of an Italian trade union and told them that the current economic crisis offers an opportunity for “a new culture of solidarity and of responsible participation” to emerge.
Meeting with the leaders of the Italian trade union CISL for its 60th anniversary, the Holy Father praised the organization for continuing to “draw inspiration for your activities from the social Magisterium of the Church, with the aim of protecting the interests of workers and pensioners in Italy."
After pointing out the numerous social encyclicals from the Popes of the 20th century, Pope Benedict XVI drew the trade leaders’ attention to the Pontiffs’ recurrent “call for solidarity and responsibility.”
The way out of the current economic and social crisis, he explained, must involve “free and responsible efforts” by everyone. “In other words what is needed is to overcome individual and sectarian interests, and unite to confront the difficulties affecting all areas of society, and particularly the world of work.”
Stressing that the need for a unified effort of solidarity is urgently needed, Pope Benedict said his hope is that “from the current global crisis there may emerge a shared desire to create a new culture of solidarity and of responsible participation, which are indispensable conditions if we are to build the future of our planet together.”
The Holy Father brought his address to the leaders of CISL to a close by exhorting them to continue to be faithful to their original charism. “The world needs people who dedicate themselves disinterestedly to the cause of work in full respect of human dignity and the common good," he said.