The Holy See In The International Arena - June 2004

The Holy See in the International Arena
Guest Speaker:
His Excellency The Most Reverend
Celestino Migliore
Titular Archbishop of Canosa,
Apostticic Nuncio, Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations

The following remarks were part of a discussion that took place at the monthly breakfast meeting of the International Service Division of the Rotary Club of New York. The meeting was held on June 16, 2004 at the German Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York City. This is a condensed and edited text that is made available as a resource to update Rotarians on current issues facing the International Development Community. The meeting was opened and moderated by Mr. Barnet.

Mr. Barnet: Archbishop Migliore obtained his master's degree in theology at the Center of Theological Studies in Fossano, and was awared the Doctorate in Canon Law. In 1980 he joined the Holy See's diplomatic service His first assignment was to Angola as Attaché and then as Second Secretary to the Apostolic Delegation of Lng as Head of Delegation of the Holyaunda, from 1980 to 1984 From there, he was transferred to the Apostolic Nunciature in the United States of America where he served as First Secretary and Alternate Observer to the Organization of American States. In 1988 he was appointed to the Apostolic Nunciature in Egypt, remaining the for a year. He was then assigned as Counselor to the Apostolic Nunciature on Warsaw, Poland, a post he held until his appointment in 1992 as Special Envoy with a role of Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the Council of Europe in Strasbourg France.
From 1995 to 2002 he served as Under-Secretary of the Section for Replations with States of the Secretariat of State, at the Vatican. During his term, he was also in charge of fostering relations with several Asian countries that do not yet have formal diplomatic relations with the Holy See. In this capacity, he traveled to Beijing, Hanoi, and Pyongyang as Head of Delegation of the Holy See. For the past six years, he was also teaching Ecclesiastical Diplomacy at the Pontifical Lateran University in Rome as visiting Professor. On October 30 2003 His Holiness Pope John Paul of the Holy See to the United Nations, nominated Archbishop Celestino Migliore as Apostolic Nuncio and Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations in New York

His Excellency Archbishop Celestino Migliore: We speak today about the diplomacy of the Holy See. Diplomacy and Holy See- that seems to be a contradiction in terms. In fact, diplomacy is a work full of meaning. The popular notion is that which is associated with Machiavelli, when he said: Diplomacy is the art of getting what you want at any cost and by any means." Can the Holy See accept this concert of diplomacy?

We must first clear the ground of a common equivocation between the Holy See and the Vatican City State. The "Holy See" is the Pope, together with all the bodies of the Roman Curia through which he governs the Catholic Church. The Holy See is a sovereign juridical person because it is the supreme organ of the Catholic Church. Its attributes as a sovereign subject is recognized in international law. It is the Holy See, and not the Vatican that is the juridical interlocutor within the international community.

In 1929, the Vatican State was created buy the agreement between the Holy See and the Kingdom of Italy. They decided to establish Vatican City in order to assure the Pope a basis for his absolute independence and autonomy from any earthly power. The Vatican is intended only to ensure independence for the action of the Holy See, Thanks to a territorial sovereignty reduced to its minimal expression. The Vatican does not pursue the aims that are proper to a Country, which has to guarantee the political, social and economic rights of its population. The diplomacy of the Holy See does not lie upon military might or economic strength. Rather, the Holy See participated on diplomacy to have its voice heard within the international community. It is interested in following and participating in the work of the UN more so from its perspective as a world stage rather than as a center of global governance. Therefore, the diplomacy of the Holy See has characteristics which are different for those of the countries of the world.
One needs to remember that fundamental principle of international law according to which every subject exercises its rights and the proper competence on relation to its nature and interests. It is for this reason that the activity of the Holy See remains concentrated in a certain order of rapport well defined in relation to its nature and end.

When one says that the nature and mission of the Holy See are chiefly of a spiritual order, it follows that its activities tend to highlight a particular vision of a person and therefore, of human society, that is not separated from the transcendence. It is this conviction that has a clear impact on every justice, peace and war, coexistence among peoples and religious liberty. The universal nature of the Holy See, which does not know national borders, allows the Holy See to be committed not only to hot topics on the international scene, but on all critical situations, and I would like to say, in particular on those which are more easily forgotten or overlooked, because they lack economic, political, or strategic interests, but especially on human person, as in concentric circles that extend for the human person, to the first communities which are the family, school, work, social places, up to the local and national communities, and then to the international setting. In sum, these are the specific guidelines of the diplomacy of the Holy See: a precise and distinct anthropological vision, universality and ethical and humanitarian interests. Perhaps we can better capture these specific facets of the diplomacy of the Holy See with the aid of some examples.
Last week, the mass media in commemorating the special contribution of the late President Regan to the fall of the Soviet bloc, also mentions in passing the contribution of Pope John Paul II. Well, if we look back carefully to what Pope John Paul II did, we find that his entire contribution stems from the specific and distinct anthropological vision mention above.

The soviet Regime intended to reach a communist globalization. Communism was based on the premise that social class struggle, the real engine of history, would sooner or later result in the solidification of the communist society all over the world. The tenets of its strategy were namely, the prevalence of collective society on the individual human being and consequently, the deferral of individual human rights and freedoms to the collective interests. The means to teach a Communist society was basically class struggle, which in the end means mutual mistrust, and even hatred. Specificities of national, cultural and religious identities of the different peoples were considered superstructures, destine to disappear. In point of actual fact, they were diametrically opposed to the social doctrine of the Church which is based on the assumption that solidarity and subsidiaritly are the core rules of a globalize society. Both stem form fundamental principle of respect for the dignity of the human person.

The principle of subsidiary maintains that nations, communities, ethnic or religious groups, families or individuals, should not be anonymously immersed into a large conglomeration, which will result in their loss of identity. The Catholic Church specifically developed the category of subsidiary long ago in order to face the stifling regimes like Marxism, Nazism, fascism, and several dictatorships.
A dozen years ago certain European circles complained about the premature recognition by the Holy
See of Slovenia and Croatia as Autonomous Republics independent form the Yugoslavian confederation. Actually, this decision was grounded in a couple of objective reasons, namely, the need for self-defense against the federal army that Belgrade was employing to fight and crush its own confederation territories. The decision stemmed above all, from the deep conviction of Pope John Paul II that those Republics like any other republic coming from the socialist bloc, regardless of their territorial or demographic size, needed to be given the chance to regain their proper cultural, social, religious, and political identity. They needed to find in their own approach and sensitivity for human rights, and rule of law. It was only by becoming deeply- rooted
in their own identity which had been confiscated for so long by an imposed unification that those countries would be able to join and make their own specific contribution to a larger economic, political or security system, or an association of countries. To affirm the necessity to protect the rights of peoples does not simply mean to give them a new subjectivity, rather, to discover and develop a new international order more responsive to the needs of all peoples.

In his second trip to Poland in 1983, John Paul II offered strong support to the newly born Solidaznosc movement, lead by Lech Walesa. We could gather from his gestures, as well as from his message, that he did not intend to give a near, even if vital impetus, to the police, social, and humanitarian uprising in Poland. He saw a glimpse of the germination
Of a cultural revolution , capable of allowing the maturation of a new societal organization, suitable not only for Poland but for the entire world.

And it is for this reason that he appealed to the Polish bishops and clergy exhorting them to take this opportunity to create a culture, and to attentively observe the phenomenon of Solidarnosc and to use that as abese upon which to develop a new vision of relation: human, civil, social and international. The culture of solidarity as envisioned by John Paul II was a non violent approach, precisely because it substituted the battle of classes with solidarity, which intended to erode and eventually dismantle every unjust and evil aspect of the communist system. The conviction of John Paul II, however, was far sighted: he envisioned in the category of solidarity the possibility to construct a new world order aster the fall of communism and the numerous insufficiencies and deficies of capitalism. the category of solidarity , society is organized upon rights and the need for individual and group participation; the distribution of good and riches will no longer be solely according to the availability of resources, but also in light of the equal dignity of every human person.

So, when the Holy See speaks of global governments in terms of global solidarity, it freely uses the motto, "Lets globalize solidarity. by which it refers not simply to acts of solidarity nor to generic humanitarian perspective, but to a solid long lasting culture, social, economic and political project which encompasses each and every concentric circle of human society.

In the context of the Cold war there was a prevalent political vision, of then ideological, regarding social realities, economies, cultures and religions. The fall of Communism has contributed to the development of market law. speaking of e common economy in a globalize contexts is equivalent to thinking of a social system revolving the daily lives of thousand and millions of people. The Holy See has become particularly attentive to the economy. The Pope has dedicated three great encyclicals: Laborem exercerns, Sollectitudo rei socialis, and Centesimus Annus, other than the post-synodal apostolic exhortations to the churches in Africa, America, and Europe, and some programmatic discourses on globalization, directed in an article to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences. In 1998, the Holy See adopted the status of Permanent Observer at the World Trade Organization, closely monitoring the world conference of Geneva, Seattle, Doha and Cancun. In the context of the United Nations Organization, the Holy Sea has taken part in the conference at Monterrey on financing for development and