Reserves of goodness needed to confront world’s challenges

Goodness needed to confront challenges

Humanity needed the “reserves of goodness present in human hearts” to confront the many challenges facing the world community says Cardinal Pietro Parolin.

Parolin, Secretary of State of the Holy See made the comment in a video statement addressed to the General Debate of the UN General Assembly.

Referring to the theme of the Debate, ‘Building Resilience Through Hope’, Parolin differentiated hope from optimism.

Whilst optimism, he said, is an expectation that things will turn out well, hope is characterized by perseverance in the face of new and existing crises.

Parolin called for a global recovery based on a renewed sense of fraternal solidarity.

He called for the international community to work together to help those on the “pharmaceutical margins” and end needless suffering and death. Vaccines, he said, must be available to everyone, especially in conflict areas and humanitarian settings.

The upcoming UN climate conference, known by the shorthand COP26, will be an important opportunity for resilience, said the Cardinal, affording the international community an opportunity to reinforce commitments to protect the Earth.

The senior official hailed the advances in technology, and human creativity, that are making environmentally conscious choices by governments and individuals easier, and inspiring hope.

However, he pointed out that hope is in short supply for many who are caught up in conflict. Parolin singled out the humanitarian and political crises in Afghanistan, Syria, and Lebanon to remind of the impact that conflicts have on peoples and nations.

The pandemic, warned Cardinal Parolin, has rendered the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030, already an uphill struggle, a daunting challenge.

Rebuilding sustainably will mean rethinking the relationship between individuals and the economy, continued the Holy See Secretary of State.

Economic models and development programs must remain at the service of all, particularly those on the margins of society, rather than exploiting both people and natural resources.

The world, warned Cardinal Parolin, is dominated by selfishness and by the culture of waste. As a result, mankind faces a “crisis of human relationships”, with negative consequences for human rights.

Humanitarian law, he declared, is often taken as a recommendation rather than an obligation. “Refugees, migrants and internally displaced persons are increasingly left in limbo or even left to drown”, Parolin stated.


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