(Vatican Radio) Pope Benedict’s pontificate has coincided with a global economic crisis that has seen poverty rates soaring in many countries around the world. The Catholic-inspired development agency Progressio says the Pope has been "an authoritative moral leader" during this time of crisis and singles out the clear message contained in his social encyclical Caritas in Veritate. Daniel Hale is Progressio’s Head of Campaigns and he spoke to Vatican Radio’s Susy Hodges.
Listen to the extended interview with Daniel Hale of Progressio:
Hale describes Pope Benedict as “unswerving in his commitment to speaking out on behalf of some of the very poorest people in the world.” Overall, he continues, the Pope has “taken a very clear view on the morality” of development issues and has been “a phenomenal advocate” in this field.
When it comes to his social encyclical Caritas in Veritate, Hale says the Pope has taken “some key themes” that existed in Catholic social teaching and has put “a contemporary spin on them.” He particularly singles out Pope Benedict’s teachings and statements on the need to protect our environment, noting that Benedict has often been dubbed “the green Pope”, after putting “solar panels” on the roofs of two buildings within the Vatican.
Hale also praises Pope Benedict for his “very empowering approach” when it comes to discussing development, social and economic issues where he stresses that we all “have a role to play in building a better future. Hale says what Pope Benedict has done when it comes to studying the global economic crisis is to “take a step back and recast the crisis as a moral problem and in so doing, invites us all to be part of the solution.”