2012-11-20 Vatican Radio(Vatican Radio) The Holy Father Benedict XVI received the President of the Republic of Benin, His Excellency Mr. Thomas Boni Yayi, in audience on Monday at the Apostolic Palace in the Vatican. A communiqué from the Press Office of the Holy See explains that the Pope and the President held cordial talks on a range of issues, including the value of local cultures in Africa
and the importance of the Church in education for peace and reconciliation, with specific mention of the positive contribution of the Catholic Church to the development of Benin. The two also touched on some regional challenges currently affecting the continent, which are of particular concern to Benin’s Head of State in his quality as current President of the African Union. The communiqué also states that the parties expressed appreciation for the good relations that exist between the Holy See and Benin, and recalled in particular the Apostolic Journey of the Holy Father in 2011. President Boni Yayi went on to meet with the Secretary of State of the Holy See, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, and with the Under-Secretary for Relations with States, Bishop Ettore Balestrero.