September 26, 2011

When public policies do not promote values such as justice, fairness and compassion, the resulting void has the potential of giving rise to frustration and despair that can explode, Pope Benedict told Great Britain's new ambassador to the Holy See.

The drive to develop public policies that promote objective values "is especially important in the light of events in England this summer," the pope told Nigel Baker, the new ambassador, during a meeting Sept. 9 at the papal villa in Castel Gandolfo.

In early August, young people in several English cities engaged in rioting, looting and arson.

Pope Benedict said, "When policies do not presume or promote objective values, the resulting moral relativism, instead of leading to a society that is free, fair, just and compassionate, tends instead to produce frustration, despair, selfishness and a disregard for the life and liberty of others."