Secretary of State, Cardinal Angelo Sodano gave his speech earlier today to the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN). The Vatican being a permanent observer to the UN, is entitled to express itself at the world summit taking place this week. This event is of particular significance, because it is celebrating the 60th anniversary of the institution.
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.”
Cardinal Sodano wished to clarify the ambiguity in using the term “reproductive health”, that is insinuating a right to abortion, and advocated for the more simple expression of “women and children’s health.”
He concluded his speech reminding the special contribution of the Holy See to the United Nations outlining that “Although the Vatican mainly fulfills a spiritual mission, it is especially from that, that stems her duty to be present in the life of Nations and her commitment to foster justice et solidarity among men.” He again expressed the backing of the Holy See to the goals and objectives of this summit.
He finally quoted late Pope John Paul II, in a trip to Chile in 1987: “Los pobres no pueden esperar.” The Poor can not wait.