Audience with the Pope

GCS goes to the Vatican

kf - Wednesday, February 26, 2020    

GCS goes to the Vatican

In a meeting with exhibition industry leaders from around the world in the Vatican, Pope Francis I declared that "it has been shown … that fairs and exhibitions not only have positive effects on regional economies and labour markets, but also offer significant opportunities for showcasing to the wider world the rich diversity and beauty of local cultures and ecosystems." On the occasion of the UFI Global CEO Summit (GCS), His Holiness invited the one hundred participants of the event to a private audience, held in the Sala Clementina in the heart of the Vatican. They had travelled from 37 countries from around the world to attend the summit. Fiera Rome with CEO Pietro Piccinetti were the host partner for the event. As the global association of the exhibition industry, UFI represents and serves exhibition organisers and venues as well as partners of the industry. UFI president Mary Larkin (president of Diversified Communications, USA) led the delegation into the meeting with Pope Francis I. "It is a great honour and privilege for us that Pope Francis 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. The message Pope Francis shared with us is a very strong motivation to continue to work to improve our events, to make them as inclusive as possible, as diverse as possible, and ever more sustainable. For me, as for everyone in the room, this meeting is already unforgettable", she said. To mark the occasion, 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. Also, as the exhibition industry is driven by the human factor and dialogue, the delegation brought tea and chocolate from Buenos Aires, the home of the pope. The meeting ended with a scene rarely witnessed at occasions like these: The pope invited each and every member of the delegation to a personal handshake and brief dialogue, therefore strongly enforcing the unique power of face-to-face connections.


Related Articles

UFI connects

UFI is launching “UFI connects”, a series of regular talks, sessions, and panels that will take place online.

Read more
EEIA gives an overview of support

The exhibition and business events were the first to be shut down and will open with delay due to the longer planning and preparation time for such events.

Read more
Exhibition professionals join webconference

Over 350 exhibition professionals from around the world joined the webconference that UFI organised on March 27, 2020 to get an update on the status in Asia.

Read more

Most read articles

Coronavirus: Cancelled & postponed trade fairs

The spread of the coronavirus has not only affected the trade fair programme in China, but now affects trade fairs and exhibitions worldwide

Read more
First assessment of the economic impact of COVID-19 on exhibitions

Based on UFI data, the orders that exhibiting companies are currently not securing already add up to 23 billion euros globally.

Read more
Call for support

As more than 220 exhibitions in Europe have been cancelled due to the novel Coronavirus outbreak, EEIA has sent a letter to the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen.

Read more

Categories and Tags

Practice | UFI | Pope Francis I | Vatican | UFI Global CEO Summit | GCS