Vatican Publisher Sponsors Cultural Gatherings

Aims to Be Salt of Earth In Rome’s Daily Life

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By Mirko Testa

ROME, MARCH 24, 2009 ( The official Vatican publisher, Libreria Editrice Vaticana,  began a series of cultural gatherings to promote its publications, present authors and explore various topics.
The gatherings, which happen on Fridays at a new shop at 4 Via di Propaganda Fide in Rome, are overseen by Neria de Giovanni, a writer and expert in women’s literature, who is also the president of the International Association of Literary Critics and director of the journal Salpare.
«The events aim at making a cultural contribution in the center of Rome’s fashion district and its everyday life,» De Giovanni explained to ZENIT.
The series will continue until June and then begin again in September with two events each month.
De Giovanni noted that the basic orientation of the series «is linked to our Catholic culture but with an openness to dialogue, to explode the myth of a Catholic culture always a little bit seen as ‘sanctimonious.'»
She added: «It is essentially a matter of a series of gatherings to create a kind of important, pleasant meeting that will not last more than an hour: enough time to know and to get to know one another but not to get bored.
«There will be authors linked to the Church and others who are not; debates on wide-ranging topics and presentations of books, including specialized ones on literature and art.»
The first meeting, which focused on the theme «Women, Bible and Sanctity,» had Maria Rosaria Del Genio, an expert on the history of mysticism, and Silvia Giacomoni, a journalist and writer, as participants.
De Giovanni noted that this is what it means to be «the salt of the earth is this: not something closed up in a cellar but a leaven in the world.»

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