CIBJO President Has Private Audience With Pope Francis

Gaetano Cavalieri, president of CIBJO, the World Jewellery Confederation, had a private audience with Pope Francis I, the head of Catholic Church (both pictured), during a conference on ethics and the digital age, held at Vatican City on May 26.

During their discussion, Cavalieri stressed to the Pope Francis how the business community had the responsibility to develop skills among young people and encourage corporate social responsibility.

During his address to the gathering, Pope Francis rejected what he described as a “false dichotomy” between the ethical teachings of religious traditions and the practical concerns of today’s business community. He insisted that there exists a natural bond between profit and social responsibility and stated that every financial and economic system should be built around ethics respectful of humanity and the common good. Where moral deficiencies exist, he added, they come as a result of individual rather than systemic failure.

“The current difficulties and crises within the global economic system have an undeniable ethical dimension,” Pope Francis stated in a speech. “They are related to a mentality of egoism and exclusion that has effectively created a culture of waste blind to the human dignity of the most vulnerable.”

This was the second time that the CIBJO president has met with the pope at the Apostolic Palace. His first private audience with Pope Francis took place in May of last year.

The conference was organized by the Centesimus Annus Pro Pontifice foundation and built around the theme “New Policies and Lifestyles in the Digital Age.”  Centesimus Annus Pro Pontifice is an international association of business and professional leaders from across the Catholic world, dedicated to infusing the ethical and social doctrine promoted by the church in economic policies and practices.

In a 2015 encyclical on climate change, Pope Francis mentioned blood diamonds in a list of societal ills. He mentioned the issue again several months later.

(Image courtesy of CIBJO, World Jewellery Confederation)

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