Pope Receives French Prime Minister

VATICAN CITY, OCT. 11, 2009 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI received the French prime minister, François Fillon, in audience Saturday at the Vatican.

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Fillon then met with the Vatican secretary of state, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, and the secretary for relations with states, Archbishop Dominique Mamberti.

A communiqué from the Vatican press office reported that in the discussions there was mention of the “Pope’s trip to Paris and Lourdes and the importance of the canonization of Blessed Jeanne Jugan,” the founder of the Congregation of the Little Sisters of the Poor. The sister was canonized today.

“Certain themes of common interest regarding bilateral relations were reviewed with the intention of continuing along the good road of dialogue and cooperation between the Holy See and the French Republic,” the note said.

It continued: “There was also an exchange of views about some international issues, especially the situation in the Middle East and certain African countries with reference to the Synod for Africa, interreligious dialogue and climate changes.

“Finally, the positive influence of the encyclical ‘Caritas in Veritate’ in relation to the global economic crisis was touched on along with new rules to be set in place for the well functioning of the economy, especially in respect to the poorest countries.”

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