Pope Francis on December 14, 2017, met with the Populorum Progressio Foundation for Latin America in the Vatican.
The foundation observed its 25th anniversary on December 12, 2017, with a conference in Rome at the Hotel “Il Cantico” entitled “25 years of service for integral human development, looking to the future.”
Entrusted, since its establishment at the behest of Saint John Paul II on February 13, 1992, to the Pontifical Council Cor Unum, the foundation is now part of the pastoral mission of the new Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development.
The Pope sent a message to the group on December 13, 2017, noting that when John Paul II established the Populorum Progressio Foundation in 1992, “His wish was for this institution to express the Pope’s closeness to people who lack even the most essential goods to live, and whom society or its authorities often leave behind.”
During its 25 years, the Foundation has implemented some 4,400 projects, to which a total of over 41 million dollars of funds have been allocated. The projects involve local communities and are targeted at various sectors, including agriculture, livestock, crafts and micro-enterprises, drinking water infrastructure, training and educational facilities, health and construction.
The members of the board are: H.E. Msgr. Edmundo Luis Flavio Abastoflor Montero, archbishop of La Paz, Bolivia, chairman of the Board of Directors; H.E. Msgr. Antonio Arregui Yarza, archbishop emeritus of Guayaquil, Ecuador, vice-president; His Eminence Cardinal Nicolás de Jesús López Rodríguez, archbishop emeritus of Santo Domingo; H.E. Msgr. Óscar Urbina Ortega, archbishop of Villavicencio, Colombia; H.E. Msgr. Murilo Sebastião Ramos Krieger, archbishop of São Salvador de Bahia, Brazil; H.E. Msgr. Javier Augusto Del Río Alba, archbishop of Arequipa, Peru; H.E. Msgr. José Luis Azuaje, bishop of Barinas, Venezuela; H.E. Msgr. Segundo Tejado Muñoz, undersecretary of the Department for Promoting Integral Human Development.