Charity Group Affirms Allegiance to Benedict XVI

VATICAN CITY, JUNE 8, 2005 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI greeted representatives of the charity Aid to the Church in Need, who expressed their willingness to be at his service.

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At the end of today’s general audience in St. Peter’s Square, Hans-Peter Röthlin and Father Joaquín Alliende Luco, president and international ecclesiastical assistant, respectively, of the Germany-based group, expressed to the Holy Father the worlds of their institution’s founder: «The Pope’s wish is sufficient to accept a project.»

During the meeting, the Aid to the Church in Need representatives handed a message to the Holy Father, in which they mentioned the close ties of friendship and cooperation that unite him to the charity.

«With good reason, Aid to the Church in Need regards you as one of its own, given that you have supported us personally for many years,» the message read in part.

The text also highlighted that «our founder, Father Werenfried van Straaten, appreciated you very much» and «identified himself with you in the difficult times after the Council with its fundamental concerns.»

Established in 1947, Aid to the Church in Need collects $70 million a year, from 600,000 benefactors, to finance 7,000 annual projects of assistance to Catholic communities in more than 130 countries.

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