Pope calls for `moral virtues` in Italian society

Pope Benedict XVI has called for "a solid platform of moral virtues" in Italy, following recent sex scandals involving Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi that have incensed the Church.

Vatican City: Pope Benedict XVI has called
for "a solid platform of moral virtues" in Italy, following
recent sex scandals involving Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi
that have incensed the Church.

He said the Catholic Church should work with the state in
every aspect of Italian society to help ease "social and
economic uncertainty."

"The ecclesiastic community considers its precise mandate
to address people in all contexts: culture, work, services and
entertainment," the pope said.

Speaking at a meeting with Interior Minister Roberto
Maroni and prefects from around Italy, Benedict emphasised the
importance of moral values as well as the need to respond to
the fallout of the current financial crisis.

Benedict last month called for an "ethical renaissance"
in Italy and senior Italian cardinal Angelo Bagnasco condemned
politicians for their lack of dignity -- a scathing comment
seen as a direct reference to Berlusconi.

PTI

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