Friday, 4 July 2003

Vatican City (Fides Service) - Globalising solidarity is the theme of the 17th general assembly of Caritas Internationalis which will take place 7-12 July at the Pontifical Urban University in Rome. The assembly, held every four years, will be attended by 400 participants including Caritas directors and delegates representing the 154 national Caritas office members of the Federation. Among them, representatives of Caritas in war torn areas of the world where humanitarian work is most needed and most difficult: Iraq, Holy Land, Congo, Sierra Leone and Indonesia.
The assembly is a time for both assessing past activities and planning for the future. Participants will reflect on the activity of the past four years: co-ordinating emergency aid; promoting rights of women; working for peace and reconciliation, pressure on international institutions, empowering regional Caritas offices. The delegates will also discuss and elaborate a new four year plan of action and identify main objectives for Caritas Internationalis in the near future.
The assembly will open with an address by Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga, Archbishop of Tegucigalpa, Honduras. This will be followed by a debate moderated by Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, newly appointed coadjutor of the archdiocese of Dublin, Ireland. PA (Fides Service 4/7/2003 EM lines 21 Words: 186)