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Italy should recognize Church contributions, Pope says

Catholic World News - May 27, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI led the bishops of Italy in the Rosary, and entrusted the nation to the care of the Virgin Mary, during a May 26 ceremony in the Roman basilica of St. Mary Major.

The Pope joined the Italian bishops—who are meeting in their general assembly—in praying the Luminous Mysteries. At the conclusion of the prayer, the Holy Father spoke about the future of Italy, and prayed that “the example of Mary might open the path to a more just, mature, and responsible society, capable of rediscovering the profound values of the human heart.”

In his short address, the Pope said that Italy, which is celebrating the 150th anniversary of its unification, “has reason to be proud of the presence and outreach of the Church.” He stressed that the Catholic Church seeks no special privileges from the state, but asks only to be allowed to pursue her own mission. That mission, the Pope continued, includes “the duty to promote and protect human life in all its stages and to concretely support the family." More generally, he said, the Church promotes her social teachings, “so that those who exercise political and administrative responsibilities do not fall victim to the temptation to exploit their positions for personal interest or the thirst for power.”

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