Katy Perry participated in a conference sponsored by Pontifical Culture and CURA.

The Vatican was the venue for an expensive conference where Katy Perry, the controversial pop star, spoke about transcendental meditation (TM). The list of other speakers was unsual: Dario Vigano, the Lettergate monsignor, gave a talk on “fake news”. Selected participants were also presented with charm bangles. The conference ran over three days, April 26 to April 28. Co-sponsors were CURA Foundation and Pontifical Council for Culture. The CURA is a global health movement. Other conference collaborators included Pontifical Academy for Life, Vatican Secretariat of State, and Vatican Secretariat for Communications.

The name of the conference was “Unite to Cure: How Science, Technology and the 21st Century Will Impact Culture and Society”. Perry held the session with Bob Roth, her meditation mentor and CEO of the David Lynch Foundation. He is also the Transcendental Meditation mentor to Dr. Mehmet Oz and Oprah Winfrey. Perry, Roth, and Vigano’s discussion was called “Impacting Children’s Health Through Meditation Globally”. The pop star informed the audience that she was taught Transcendental Meditation by Roth in India. She told the audience that the stillness she discovered was beyond anything she ever experienced.

The International Vatican Conference, now on its fourth iteration, had multiple positive aims. It featured talks from a broad panel of experts taken from varied fields like technology, medicine, media, and business. The audience was a mix of Vatican officials, prosperous investment bankers, biotech leaders, and celebrities. The goal of this event was to unite individuals without any prejudice to stimulate an open dialog and also catalyze the due interdisciplinary approach to manage important global healthcare challenges.

The list of speakers included Deepak Chopra, the alternative medicine mogul and self-styled New Age guru and Jack Nicklaus, famous professional golfer and known philanthropist from the United States. The list of attendees included Tony Robbins, the American life coach and motivational speaker. Joe Biden, the former US Vice President, also delivered a message.

Perry’s presence, along with others, was a sore point for many in the Vatican. One Vatican insider told the media that it is an insult to see the pop star speak about TM from the same sitting place used by Pope Francis during the major church meetings. They said it symbolizes the scandal, chaos, and disorientation which marks the present pontificate. Conservative church voices said it is hurtful to see the church podium given to TM proponents without any church members to oversee them.

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