Globalization Needs a New Ethical Path, Says Pope

Cites the Widening Gap Between Rich and Poor Nations

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VATICAN CITY, MAY 2, 2004 (Zenit.org).- John Paul II says that globalization is widening the gap between rich and poor countries, and that it must be given a new ethical direction.



"It is necessary that the process of globalization that is taking place at this time be inspired by profound ethical values and oriented to the integral development of every man and of the whole man," the Pope contended.

He expressed this need in a message sent to an international conference on "Confronting Globalization: Global Governance and the Politics of Development," organized by the Vatican foundation Centesimus Annus -- Pro Pontifice, held here Friday and Saturday.

"In the process of world globalization, the gap between rich and poor countries is ever greater," the Holy Father said.

"In the face of populations that live in conditions of unacceptable misery, in the face of those who are in situations of hunger, poverty and growing social inequalities, it is urgent to intervene to safeguard the dignity of the person and to foster the promotion of the common good," he added.

John Paul II said that the present process requires a response to the question "How can globalization and solidarity be mutually integrated so that they can initiate worldwide dynamics that result in harmonious economic growth and, at the same time, a just development?"

"The challenge continues to be to give life to a solidaristic globalization, identifying the causes of economic and social imbalances and presenting operative options capable of ensuring a future of solidarity and hope for all," the Pope said.

John Paul II founded Centesimus Annus -- Pro Pontifice 10 years ago to promote knowledge and practice of the Church's social doctrine.

The foundation's administrative council comprises seven lay members, one of whom is appointed by the Holy See, and the other six elected by the council's members. The current president is Italian Count Lorenzo Rossi di Montelera.

The foundation has promoted study and formation initiatives, including a master's degree in social doctrine, organized with the Lateran University.

The foundation can be reached at centannus@foundation.va.