July 9, 2009.
The pope received Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in the Vatican today for a cordial meeting.
Rudd is one of several heads of state that are meeting with the pope during the week of the G8 summit in Italy.
They remembered the pope’s trip to Australia for World Youth Day in 2008, and the great rapport between the ecclesiastic and civil authorities during this event.
The prime minister gave Benedict six bottles of sweet Australian wine and a copy of a resolution passed through the Australian parliament that officially apologized for the historically foul treatment of Aboriginal children.
In return, the pope presented him with a pen that’s a replica of one of the pillars of the altar of the Basilica of St. Peter. He also gave him a signed copy of his new encyclical “Charity in Truth.”