Pope discusses religious liberty with Lithuanian Ambassador

2012-09-06 Vatican Radio

(Vatican Radio) "The conversation with the Holy Father was, I would say, intellectually very intense" says the new Ambassador to the Holy See from Lithuania, Mrs. Irena Vaišvilaitė, following her audience with Pope Benedict in Castel Gandolfo on Thursday.

A former Chief Advisor to the Lithuanian president and vice-chancellor of the European University of Humanities, Ambassador Vaišvilaitė is also a past colleague having worked at the Vatican Radio between 1991 and 1998.

The Ambassador holds a degree in Art History from the Lomonosov Moscow State University and a doctorate in Church History from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome.

Speaking to us following the meeting, she described her audience with the Pope as very “exciting and welcoming”:

“The Holy Father received me with great warmth. I brought him greetings from the president who has fond memories of his visit two years ago. The Holy Father thanked me for the greetings, then, we spoke of the invitation to the Pope to travel to Lithuania”.

Ambassador Vaišvilaitė continued :“The conversation with the Holy Father was, I would say, intellectually very intense. The Holy Father was well informed about Lithuania and the political situation. But he tackled a few issues such as the development of post communist societies and the transition in these decades, the generations that reached their maturity under oppression, under a totalitarian state, and generations that already were formed under freedom. And that brings very different attitudes towards freedom, liberties, rights and religion, the role of religion in society. What worries the Holy Father is the narrowing of the freedom of faith to mere freedom of worship”. Listen: