Pope Francis spoke to delegates from UFI’s CEO Summit in Rome, saying that tradefairs can “showcase to the wider world the rich diversity and beauty of local cultures.”
The Pope invited the one hundred delegates of the event to a private audience in the Sala Clementina inside the Vatican. He stressed that their work “should promote inclusion, care for our common home, and the integral development of individuals and peoples.”
He added: “Exhibitions that help the local economy, engage its labour force, give value and prominence to its culture and reverently respect its human and natural ecology will ultimately be more successful and memorable. They will have an impact and appeal both locally and worldwide.”
UFI presented His Holiness with a sapling of an olive tree – a symbol of the passion for peaceful dialogue and sustainable development created through exhibitions and events.
UFI President Mary Larkin (President of Diversified Communications, USA), led the delegation into the meeting with Pope Frances I. She said: “It is a great honour and privilege for us that Pope Frances invited us to this exchange. Often, in our everyday work life, we focus very much on delivering the next event. Today carried a powerful message that the social and cultural dimension of our work deserves just as much attention.”