28 June 2011


Speaking at the recent United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC-IV) in Istanbul, Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Holy See's permanent representative to the UN in Geneva, stated that "a comprehensive and inclusive framework for international development is essential if any enduring results are to be achieved."

Noting that continued growth in many of these countries has "not translated into an improved situation for the people," Archbishop Tomasi focused on the concept of "integral human development" which is elucidated in Catholic social teaching: respect for human dignity; protection of human rights; care of creation; participation in community, subsidiarity and solidarity; along with education; natural resource exploitation; agriculture; manufacturing; trade; financial services; infrastructure and technology.

He went on to say that authentic development "must include not just material growth but also spiritual growth." and that quantifiable and economic criteria such as gross domestic product or stock market growth fail to capture the full measure of what it means to be human.

Growth that is promoting integral human development is "evaluated by how well it promotes sustainable development and communities, creates decent jobs, alleviates people’s poverty and protects the environment" he added.

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