Ban Ki-Moon Says UN and Holy See Have 'Same Goals and Ideas'

Comments Made Ahead of Vatican Meeting on Friday

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In an interview published Wednesday, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has said the United Nations and the Holy See have the “same goals and ideas”.

The UN chief, who is to meet Pope Francis on Friday, said he was grateful to be able to meet the Holy Father for a second time (the two first met in April last year). This year, he noted they will meet “in the context” of a summit of heads of UN agencies taking place this week in Rome.

“I thank him for the time that he will dedicate to us,” he said, according to the Italian newspaper Il Velino. “The United Nations and the Holy See have the same goals and the same ideas,” he added.

“When we met, I was very struck by his commitment to eradicate poverty, achieve the millennium goals, and his support for social justice, tolerance, and mutual respect.

“They are very important issues, which pose great challenges to the world,” he said. 

His comments come after two UN treaty monitoring bodies were widely criticized recently for unfairly questioning the Holy See.

The UN has long had differences with the Church on fundamental issues relating to life such as contraception, abortion and same-sex attraction.

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