VATICAN CITY, FEB. 22, 2009 ( The Vatican spokesman requested journalists to refrain from attributing positions to the Holy See that it has not taken.

A note published Saturday by the Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See's press office, claims that "it is not rare that the media attribute to the 'Vatican' -- by which they mean the Holy See -- comments and points of view that cannot automatically be attributed to it."

He explained: "The Holy See, in fact, when it intends to authoritatively express itself uses the proper means and suitable ways -- communiqués, notes, declarations. Every other pronouncement does not have the same value."

Father Lombardi concluded: "Even recently, there have been inopportune attributions.

"The Holy See, in its representative organs, shows respect for civil authorities, which in their legitimate autonomy have the right and the duty to provide for the common good."