-- ZENIT.org News Agency
Pope Receives Staff of Order of Malta Hospital
Emphasizes Need to Treat the Sick as the "Flesh of Christ"
VATICAN CITY, June 14, 2013 (Zenit.org) - Yesterday morning, Pope Francis received Matthew Festing, the Grand Master of the Order of Malta, who was accompanied by Cardinal Paolo Sardi and staff of the hospital of the Order of Malta, St. John the Baptist, in Rome
During the meeting, the Grad Master presented the activities of the Order of Malta, underlining the ancient tradition of assistance to the weak and the suffering that has always characterized their actions.
Pope Francis exhorted those present to continue their assistance work at the Hospital with courage and hope, sentiments that he hoped would be extended to those working in both hospitals and clinics.
The Holy Father also strongly emphasized that today's crisis not so much question of economy as it is of morality. "The subsequent cutting of resources is offensive to human life and threatens to regard life as a mere "object of exchange," the Holy Father explained.
The Holy Father called on the participants to consider their neighbor as the "flesh of Christ" which although is difficult to care for but for us it should be considered a moral challenge to overcome.
The general director of the Hospital of the Order of Malta, Tiziana Frittelli, thanked the Holy Father for the strong moral support he has shown towards healthcare in general and, especially to Catholic institutions, e encouragement to continue on the mission of caring for the weak and defenseless.
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