Vatican City, 11 June 2015 (VIS) – Today marked the celebration of the National Day of the Holy See at the Expo 2015 in Milan. Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, General Commissioner of the Holy See for Expo Milan 2015, Archbishop Giovanni Angelo Becciu, substitute for General Affairs of the Secretariat of State, Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, president on the Italian Episcopal Conference, and Cardinal Angelo Scola, Archbishop of Milan, all spoke this morning. This afternoon the “Courtyard of the Gentiles” will also intervene with a presentation on the theme of “The Faces of the Earth”.
During the course of the celebrations this morning, Archbishop Becciu's speech emphasized that the Holy See considers the vast objective of ensuring an adequate level of nutrition as a real necessity, a result of true sharing, the same which is evidenced in the participation of so many countries in Expo Milan 2015.
“A shared action,” the archbishop stated, “whose priority is the reduction of the number of hungry persons must include not only interventions during emergency situations, but also projects in favor of agricultural development and their funding proportionate to the different capacity of donors and the needs of beneficiaries. Giving and receiving according to justice requires a formation of conscience attentive to the needs of others, of each one, including when the problem is related to the use of technology, their transfer to the most vulnerable areas and the ability to meet the needs of beneficiaries without limiting the prerogatives, rights, and―not the least―alimentary customs and cultures. Such a commitment demands that governments, international institutions, and civil social organizations involved in food safety work together, preserving diversity without putting them at odds, and using dialogue as the only concrete tool.”
“Religions and their traditions,” he added, “know well that freedom from hunger also means freedom from conflicts and prevention of war as the Catholic Church's litany of saints recalls, in the prayer for liberation from disease, hunger, and war: 'a peste, fame, et bello libera nos, Domine'.”