B16 Quotient for the Day

Zenit has the text of B16's address to the World Council of Churches today. (I tried to resist thinking, "Wow, talk about your ecumenical outreach!). How's this for ecumenism in a nutshell? "In addition to good intentions, 'concrete gestures which ent+er hearts and stir consciences … inspiring in everyone that inner conversion that is the prerequisite for all ecumenical progress."

He also received the credentials of the Ambassador from New Zealand, and made this wonderful comment (so many interesting things are said in credentials-receiving ceremonies. It's a pity none of us pays attention) about the relationship between civil and moral law.

"Today, when individuals often forget their origin and thus lose sight of their goal, they easily fall prey to whimsical social trends, the distortion of reason by particular interest groups, and exaggerated individualism. Confronted with this "crisis of meaning" (cf. Encyclical Letter "Fides et Ratio," 81), civic and religious authorities are called to work together encouraging everyone, including the young, to "direct their steps towards a truth which transcends them" (ibid., 5). Sundered from that universal truth, which is the only guarantee of freedom and happiness, individuals are at the mercy of caprice and slowly lose the capacity to discover the profoundly satisfying meaning of human life."

Then, whoa, Nellie! He pretty much let Mugabe have it in the person of his new ambassador. He said responsible leadership "is marked by truthfulness, a spirit of service to others, honest management of public goods, commitment to the rule of law and the promotion of the right and duty of all citizens to participate in the life of society. The noble goal of attaining the common good through an ordered social life can only be attained if political leaders are devoted to ensuring the welfare of individuals and groups in a spirit of integrity and fairness. . ."

He doesn't pull punches, even when he is being unfailingly polite. You can find all these addresses in full at Zenit's site.