Cardinal says bad bankers must ask God's pardon

Wed Mar 11, 2009 12:16pm EDT
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ROME (Reuters) - Unscrupulous bankers responsible for unleashing the global financial crisis should ask for forgiveness from God, a leading U.S. cardinal said Wednesday.

"The economic crisis is rooted in the lack of respect, on the part of the leadership of the world, toward other people," Cardinal James Francis Stafford told Vatican Radio.

"Bankers should assume moral responsibility and ask God for forgiveness for these complex sins," said Stafford, former archbishop of Denver and one of the highest-ranking Americans in the Vatican.

The Vatican has expressed concern about the global financial system and Pope Benedict in recent months has branded it as self-centered, short-sighted and lacking in concern for the poor.

(Editing by Andrew Roche)