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Belief in God provides moral orientation for society, Pope tells new German envoy

Catholic World News - September 13, 2010

Meeting on September 13 with a new ambassador from Germany to the Holy See, Pope Benedict XVI spoke about the importance to society of belief in a personal God.

“If God does not have His own will, then good and bad end up being indistinguishable,” the Pope said. He continued:

Man thus loses the moral and spiritual energy necessary for the overall development of the person. Social activity is increasingly dominated by private interest or by power calculations, to the detriment of society.

The Pope had begun his remarks to the new ambassador, Walter Jurgen Schmid, by mentioning the coming September 19 beatification of Father Gerhard Hirschfelder, who was martyred by the Nazi regime, and four other priests who will be beatified next year. All of them died for a personal God, he pointed out—not for “a supreme being, mysterious and undefined, who has only a vague relation with the personal life of human beings.” Turning to more specific questions, the Pope told the envoy that the Church “looks with concern at the growing attempts to eliminate the Christian concept of marriage and the family from the conscience of society.” He also mentioned the need to avoid biomedical approaches that “involve manipulation of man, the violation of his integrity and dignity.”

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