Card. Peter K.A. Turkson will participate on Wednesday 22 January at a Vatican Round Table at the Goal 17 Partners Space entitled "Can an alliance between faith and finance address the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor? Why a union of religious leaders and financiers can be a necessary prerequisite for progress?".
Last year, leaders from the public, private, and non-profit sectors came together under the theme of “Building an Economy that Serves” to address the ethical challenge posed by persistent poverty and rising social inequality on a global scale.
This year’s Vatican Roundtable will build upon the dialogue begun last year and shift the focus from whether change is possible to a discussion on how to change. If people of good will are to address the ecological state of the planet and the social conditions of her inhabitants, then they need to promote personal and structural changes.
The focus of the meeting will be on change which can address those who suffer the most due to society’s inequity or the extreme change in the earth’s ecological balance.
As Pope Francis writes in his encyclical Laudato si', “a true ecological approach always becomes a social approach; it must integrate questions of justice in debates on the environment, so as to hear both the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor". Specific consideration will be given to the role of finance, since, as Pope Francis says, “to stop investing in people, in order to gain greater short-term financial gain, is bad business for society (Laudato si', 128).
The roundtable, in which stakeholders on economic, political, development and environmental issues will be engaged, will be moderated by Jean-Hugues Monier (McKinsey) and Fr. Augusto Zampini (Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, Holy See).
This morning, Pope Francys said in a message addressed to the Davos Forum, read by Card. Turkson, that it is necessary "to go beyond short-term technological or economic approaches and take full account of the ethical dimension in seeking solutions to current problems or propose initiatives for the future". A truly integral human development, however, continued the Pontiff, can be achieved "only when all members of the human family are included in the search for the common good and can contribute to it." For this reason, the person must be placed at the center of public policy , concluded the Pope.