Universities Must Help Preserve Christian Culture, Says Pope

Addresses Challenges of Globalization During Chileans’ Visit

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VATICAN CITY, OCT. 15, 2002 (Zenit.org).- John Paul II says Catholic universities and schools must face the challenge of preserving Christian culture and identity in the era of globalization.

When the Pope met today with Chilean bishops during their every-five-year visit to Rome, he said that in the process of globalization «at times serious threats are perceived for the weakest nations, from an economic, technical and cultural point of view.»

Yet, globalization «also contains elements that can offer new opportunities for growth,» he observed.

In this context, the Holy Father said that «the efforts of the Chilean people to insert themselves in the global world must not lead them to lose their cultural identity.»

They must avoid reducing everything «to a mere economic exchange» and must offer «everywhere the best values of their ‘alma patria,’ strongly linked to their Catholic tradition,» John Paul II said.

«This will enrich the ever-more diffuse multicultural environment, through attitudes of mutual respect and the cultivation of a dialogue that seeks truth passionately, removing itself from superficiality and relativism, which promote indifference and deteriorate coexistence,» the Pope explained.

«Catholic universities and schools which, thanks be to God, are numerous in Chile, must contribute to this,» he said. «I am sure that the bishops will continue to give them great attention, because they are destined to lead Chilean society to the salutary ferment of the Gospel of Christ.»

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