Pope to South Korean Authorities: Progress Must Be in Human, Not Merely Economic Terms

Greatest Hope for the Future is in Young People, Elderly

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Pope Francis has said quiet listening and dialogue rather than use of force are the proper tools achieve peace.

Speaking to the South Korean president, Park Geun-hye, and authorities, in Seoul’s presidential palace at about 5 p.m., local time, the Pope also expressed his appreciation for the nation’s efforts in favor of reconciliation and stability, which are the “only sure path to lasting peace.”

During his address, the Pope stressed the challenges inherent to diplomacy, the importance of young people and the elderly, as well as Korea’s rich cultural and historical heritage.

The Pontiff said “the quest for peace” is a challenge for every person, but especially for diplomats. “For diplomacy, as the art of the possible, is based on the firm and persevering conviction that peace can be won through quiet listening and dialogue rather than by mutual recriminations, fruitless criticisms and displays of force.»

Peace, the Pope said, “is not simply the absence of war,” but the work of the virtue of justice, which demands we not only forget past injustices, “but overcome them through forgiveness, tolerance and cooperation.”

Recalling his visit to the Asian country is for the occasions of the 6th Asian Youth Day and the beatification of 124 martyrs, he noted these “celebrations complement each other,” as both draw attention to two important groups.

“The elderly and the young people, who, by preserving memory and inspiring courage, are our greatest treasure and our hope for the future,” the Pope said.

The Holy Father underscored that Korean culture “understands well the inherent dignity and wisdom of our elders and honors their place in society,” and also, “treasures their young, seeking to pass on the legacy of the past and to apply it to the challenges of the present.”

A key challenge to reflect on, he noted, is “how well we are transmitting our values to the next generation, and on the kind of world and society we are preparing to hand on to them.”

“Experience teaches us,» the Pope stated, “that in an increasingly globalized world, our understanding of the common good, of progress and development, must ultimately be in human and not merely economic terms.”

For this reason, Francis encouraged them to continue their quest for peace, and efforts “directed toward the goal of building a better, more peaceful, just and prosperous world for our children.”

“What a gift hope is! We cannot become discouraged in our pursuit of these goals,” the Pope declared.


On Zenit’s Web page:

Full Text: http://www.zenit.org/en/articles/pope-s-discourse-to-president-and-authorities

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Deborah Castellano Lubov

Deborah Castellano Lubov is Senior Vatican & Rome Correspondent for ZENIT; author of 'The Other Francis' ('L'Altro Francesco') featuring interviews with those closest to the Pope and preface by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Parolin (currently published in 5 languages); Deborah is also NBC & MSNBC Vatican Analyst. She often covers the Pope's travels abroad, often from the Papal Flight (including for historic trips such as to Abu Dhabi and Japan & Thailand), and has also asked him questions on the return-flight press conference on behalf of the English-speaking press present. Lubov has done much TV & radio commentary, including for NBC, Sky, EWTN, BBC, Vatican Radio, AP, Reuters and more. She also has contributed to various books on the Pope and has written for various Catholic publications. For 'The Other Francis': http://www.gracewing.co.uk/page219.html or https://www.amazon.com/Other-Francis-Everything-They-about/dp/0852449348/

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