Centesimus Annus: inclusive growth to eradicate poverty

An international conference kicks off in Rome to address the issue of improving the economy with attention to social issues based on the encyclical of St. John Paul II and the words of Pope Francis

Vatican News

In our age we have to face the poverty caused by economic, climatic, digital, spiritual, educational, health situations. A very complex set of difficult situations, but which must be addressed and resolved urgently. This is the goal of the Centesimus Annus – Pro Pontefice Foundation, promoter of the international conference dedicated to “Inclusive growth to eradicate poverty and promote sustainable development and peace” which will take place on Thursday 6 and Friday 7 October at the Palazzo della Cancelleria in Rome.

Economic, cultural and spiritual poverty

Regarding the theme of the Conference, we read in the official press release of the event, our thoughts go to Pope Saint John Paul II, who had emphasized in the Centesimus Annus (57) that: “[È] I note that there are many other forms of poverty, especially in modern society, not only economic, but also cultural and spiritual ”; and to Pope Francis, who on the occasion of the Message for Lent of 2014 had reminded us that: “Modernity has to deal with three types of ‘poverty’. Poverty is much worse because it involves a situation “without faith, without support, without hope”.

An inclusive growth

We know that economic growth is essential for the eradication of poverty. But an expanding economy doesn’t mean everyone benefits equally. To ensure the well-being of the entire population, economic growth must be inclusive. To be so, growth should generate decent jobs and offer opportunities to all segments of society, especially the most disadvantaged, in order to distribute the gains of prosperity more equitably. Furthermore, to bring new opportunities, growth must also support sustainable consumption and production, thus enabling equally sustainable development. It is no coincidence that the 2030 Agenda recognizes the fact that the eradication of poverty in all its forms and dimensions is the greatest global challenge and a prerequisite for sustainable development.

A fairer and fairer society

In this complex context, the International Conference aims to strengthen the Foundation’s commitment to the study and research of new models of economic and social development, inspired by Catholic social doctrine, as indicated by Pope Francis in his address to the Foundation in 2021: “In every area of ​​life, today more than ever, we are required to bear witness to our concern for others, to think not only of ourselves, and to freely commit ourselves to the development of a more just and equitable society, where forms of selfishness do not prevail and vested interests. At the same time, we are called to be vigilant in sustaining respect for the human person and his freedom, and in safeguarding his inviolable dignity. This is the mission of putting into effect the social doctrine of the Church ”.

Concrete actions

What can be done today, concretely, to build a more just society and eradicate poverty? To answer this question, experts from different parts of the world have been called to confront each other, who will address various specific issues: the real situation of the different dimensions of poverty, new forms of poverty, concrete actions to pursue an inclusive economy, solidarity, subsidiarity and sustainability in tackling poverty, the role of governments and institutions to combat poverty and that of agricultural markets and the food value chain for inclusion and sustainability.

The objectives and the program of the conference

This attention to the study and concrete implementation of activities in the field of the multiple and complex economic-social dynamics characterize the specific heritage that the Centesimus Annus Foundation has been promoting since 1993, the year of its birth. It is committed to dealing with the real world by carrying out the mission of spreading the knowledge of the Christian social doctrine among people qualified for their entrepreneurial and professional responsibility, involving them in making themselves actors and actresses in the concrete application of the social Magisterium. At the end of the conference, the program of which can be consulted on the Foundation’s website, participants will be given a moment of prayer and listening in the Apostolic Palace with the Holy Mass celebrated by Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson, the meeting with the Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin and the private audience granted by Pope Francis.

Centesimus Annus: inclusive growth to eradicate poverty – Vatican News