Rome, Italy, Nov 5, 2010 / 13:09 pm
When Pope Benedict XVI arrives in Spain this weekend he will find a society facing an economic crisis and the social implications of growing secularization and indifference to religion.
The Pope’s Nov. 6–7 pilgrimage will concentrate on Spain’s Catholic landmarks in an effort to inspire and renew a shrinking local Church and help Spaniards rediscover their deep Christian roots.
Salomé Adroher Biosca, a dean at the Pontifical University of Comillas law faculty in Madrid, said the Pope will find a Spanish society facing a host of challenges — an economic crisis, the threat of domestic terrorism from ethnic Basque separatists, and an increasingly individualistic public morality.
Spain has been among the countries in Europe hardest hit by the worldwide economic downturn. With more than 5 million Spaniards out of work, government assistance programs are being stretched to their limits and social unrest is growing.