The statement explained that the Holy See’s “disinterested, non-partisan service has always been appreciated by the member states at the United Nations.”
“The Holy See’s special status enables it to encourage genuine dialogue, promote peaceful resolution of conflicts, and appeal beyond the mere territorial interests of states to the consciences of their leaders,” said a declaration and petition supporting the Holy See's unique presence in world diplomacy.
The statement explained that the Holy See's “disinterested, non-partisan service has always been appreciated by the member states at the United Nations.”
“We join with the Member States in gratitude for the spiritual and moral witness of the Holy See at the United Nations,” it continued. “The world would be far poorer if the voice of the Holy See within the United Nations were ever silenced. May that day never come.”
The declaration and petition was launched by the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute Jan. 17. Three days later, it had accumulated more than 3,000 signatures.
Austin Ruse, the institute’s president, said the petition campaign is a response to efforts to remove the Holy See from the U.N. General Assembly.
“The Holy See is the conscience of the UN. It is the only delegation that does not have political considerations in how they negotiate. They negotiate purely from first principles,” he said.
Drafted by Princeton Law School professor Robert P. George and William Saunders of Americans United for Life, the declaration noted that the Holy See has been working in diplomacy since the fourth century A.D. It now has diplomatic relations with 177 nations.
The declaration charged that opponents of the Vatican's presence at the U.N. dislike the Holy See’s “steadfast defense of the sanctity of human life and the inviolable dignity of the family.”
“Certain organizations, in the name of a false ‘liberation,’ seek to undermine central truths regarding the nature of the human person and of the family. In the name of a false doctrine of human rights, they deny what makes men truly human and violate true human rights,” the statement said.
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