Archbishop Renato Martino, head of the Observer Delegation of the Holy See to the United Nations, spoke yesterday before the Third Committee during the discussion of the report of the secretary general on Item 99, the follow-up to the International Year of Older Persons: Second World Assembly on Ageing. Archbishop Martino, who is president-elect of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, pointed to the UN-sponsored meetings to discuss the problems of older persons, and said that: "Too many people, especially older persons are not aware of the work that has been done, and too many do not know that there is indeed a plan to help them to better realise their role in the societies in which they live, and the responsibilities that societies have in helping older persons fulfil those roles." He noted that "the Catholic Church, through its various agencies and local diocesan programs operates 13,239 homes, hospices and care institutions for older persons." Source: Vatican Information Service
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