Pope: Winter Olympics a 'contribution to peace'

Pope Benedict XVI said today he hoped the Turin Winter Olympics would bring out a spirit of fairness and fraternity and help contribute to peace in the world.

Benedict also sent a special greeting to the athletes and organisers of the games during his traditional Sunday blessing to tourists and the faithful who gathered under his studio window in St. Peter’s Square in Rome.

“I hope that this beautiful sporting competition is being carried out with the teaching of the Olympic values of fairness, joy and fraternity, thus bringing a contribution to peace among peoples,” Benedict said.

Benedict also noted that the Catholic Church on Saturday had marked the World Day of the Sick, with a particular emphasis this year on mental illness.

He said he was praying for all the sick of the world, in particular those who also suffer from loneliness, misery and being marginalised.

“I give particular thoughts also to those who in hospitals and care centres look after the sick and work for their cure,” he said.

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