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Journal article shows Vatican acceptance of St. Egidio community's diplomatic influence

December 29, 2011

An article in the Jesuit journal Civilta Cattolica on the St. Egidio community shows the considerable influence of that Catholic movement, as well as the limits of Vatican enthusiasm, the Italian daily L’Espresso. The contents of La Civilta Cattolica are approved in advance by the Vatican Secretariat of State, so the journal is regarded as a semi-official organ of the Vatican. The fact that the article lauds the diplomatic activities of St. Egidio is particularly noteworthy, since the lay group works independently, although the Secretariat of State operates in the same sphere.

However the article in La Civilta Cattolica is also revealing in another respect. A longer version of the same piece was previously published in a German publication. The version that was vetted by the Secretariat of State dropped sections that emphasized the support of Pope John Paul II for the St. Egidio community, and the group’s enthusiasm for the late Pontiff’s inter-religious initiatives at Assisi.


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