Pope Benedict spoke to the United Nations General Assembly today. The AP religious writer Eric Gorski reported this on the pope's speech:
Pope Benedict XVI told diplomats at the United Nations on Friday that respect for human rights was the key to solving many of the world's problems, while cautioning that international cooperation was threatened by "the decisions of a small number." The pontiff, addressing the U.N. General Assembly on his first papal trip to the U.S., said the organization's work is vital. But he raised concerns that power is concentrated among just handful of players. "Multilateral consensus," he said, speaking in French, "continues to be in crisis because it is still subordinated to the decisions of a small number." The world's problems call for collective interventions by the international community, he said.
Now if you read through the pope's speech (As I did twice) you will not see anything about "power concentrated among just handful of players." It's also not clear where the AP came up with the "multilateral consensus" statement, either. This would have been surprising coming from a man they call "God's Rottweiler" because he is considered to be such a strong enforcer of the faith.
What Benedict did speak on was human rights- rules that do not limit freedom (not socialism). He also emphasized religious freedom. He did not, as the AP suggested, give some kind of socialist US-bashing manifesto. Here is the transcript of Pope Benedict's speech today to the United Nations.
The most important segment of his speech dealt with religious freedom. This is something the pope has spoken about recently with the Saudi Kingdom. Religious persecution is a frequent theme in his speeches. Pope Benedict urged UN member states to value the right of religious freedom:
"Human rights, of course, must include the right to religious freedom, understood as the expression of a dimension that is at once individual and communitarian - a vision that brings out the unity of the person while clearly distinguishing between the size of the citizen and that of the believer. The activity of the United Nations in recent years has ensured that public debate gives space to viewpoints inspired by a religious vision in all its dimensions, including ritual, worship, education, dissemination of information and the freedom to profess religion and choose .
It is inconceivable, then, that believers should have to suppress a part of themselves - their faith - in order to be active citizens. It should never be necessary to deny God in order to enjoy one's rights. The rights associated with religion are all the more in need of protection if they are considered to clash with a prevailing secular ideology or religious positions with majority of an exclusive nature.
The full guarantee of religious liberty can not be limited to the free exercise of worship, but has to give due consideration to the public dimension of religion, and hence to the possibility of believers playing their part in building the social order. Indeed, they actually do so, for example through their influential and generous involvement in a vast network of initiatives which extend from Universities, scientific institutions and schools to health care agencies and charitable organizations in the service of the poorest and most marginalized.
Refusal to recognize the contribution to society that is rooted in the religious dimension and in the quest for the Absolute - by its nature, expressing communion between persons - would effectively privilege an individualistic approach, and would fragment the unity of the person.
Sadly, this was not even mentioned in the AP's report.
Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your summary of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH