This year's message - published in English, French, and Italian - is entitled "Witnessing to a Spirit of Poverty: Christians and Buddhists in Dialogue." In the message, Benedict XVI recalls that he recently affirmed that there is a "chosen" poverty, "which allows one to tread in the footsteps of Jesus Christ. ... We understand this poverty to mean above all an emptying of self, ... creat[ing] in us a willingness to listen to God and to our brothers and sisters, being open to them, and respecting them as individuals."
The Pope also refers to "a poverty, a deprivation, which God does not desire and which should be fought; a poverty that prevents people and families from living as befits their dignity; a poverty that offends justice and equality and that, as such, threatens peaceful co-existence."
The message closes by thanking Buddhists for their "inspiring witness of non-attachment and contentment. Monks, nuns, and many lay devotees among you embrace a poverty 'to be chosen' that spiritually nourishes the human heart, substantially enriching life with a deeper insight into the meaning of existence, and sustaining commitment to promoting the goodwill of the whole human community."