Pope Francis- the head of Catholic Church – met President of Malta, Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, in the Vatican on Thursday. The two sides discussed collaboration between the State and Catholic Church, stated a release published by Vatican News.
The collaboration was discussed for “the human, social, cultural, and spiritual progress of the population, in particular, the young, in the light of the centuries-long contribution that Catholicism has offered the country,” it stated.
The Maltese President also met Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin, and Monsignor Antoine Camilleri, Undersecretary for Relations with States. A statement released by the Holy See Press Office said that both the parties talked about “constructive relations that unite the Holy See and the Republic of Malta.”
Talks regarding various issues of common interest like the situation of the Mediterranean area in terms of the problem of migration, interreligious dialogue, European integration, etc were also held during the visit.
The Maltese President also presented Pope Francis with a copy of the first-ever National Interfaith Declaration. The Declaration was signed by faith leaders of Malta on the occasion of the United Nations Interfaith Harmony Week.
Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca will be ending her term as the President of Malta on April 4 and her visit to the Vatican was her last official commitment abroad. She was accompanied by Carmelo Abela, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Promotion and Frank Zammit, Ambassador of Malta to the Holy See.