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Vatican newspaper pays tribute to Luigi Sturzo, Italian Popular Party

January 18, 2019

In a front-page editorial, the Vatican newspaper’s new editor described the centenary of the founding of the Partito Popolare Italiano (Italian Popular Party) on January 18, 1919, as the first of the important historical anniversaries of 2019.

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Andrea Monda, L’Osservatore Romano’s new editor, recalled that the Servant of God Father Luigi Sturzo (1871-1959) founded a political party of Christian inspiration but open to all persons in order to counter the idolatrous nationalism that he saw arising after World War I. Sturzo did not run for national political office at the time (he was vice-mayor of his Sicilian city), and his party championed subsidiarity, progressive tax reform, and women’s suffrage.

Sturzo went into exile after the Fascist government of Benito Mussolini took power. During his exile in Great Britain and the United States, he wrote several works related to Catholic social teaching, including Church and State (1939), The True Life (1943), The Inner Laws of Society (1944), Spiritual Problems of Our Times (1945), and Italy and the Coming World (1945). He also cooperated with British intelligence during World War II. In 2002, the Congregation for the Causes of Saints approved the introduction of his beatification cause.


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