Reuters South Africa reports that Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi arranged a new coalition government on Saturday, “ending weeks of political turmoil that aroused fears of economic instability in Italy.”

The report also states, “Amongst the winners on Saturday was the UDC’s Rocco Buttiglione, who switches from being minister for European Affairs to the more prestigious culture minister.”

Buttiglione, a member of the Acton Institute Board of Advisors, recently spoke about Pope Benedict XVI. According to the Zenit News Agency,

Rocco Buttiglione, and Italian politician and expert on Pope John Paul II’s thought, was interviewed by the Italian newspaper La Repubblica on Wednesday. Buttiglione, who first met the future Benedict XVI over 30 years ago, commented that the German is a great theologian, “one of the greatest intellectuals of our time,” who also has a marked sense of humor.

One of the key ideas of the new Pope, Buttiglione explained, is that we need to rediscover the eternal truths in the context of modern society. Modernity poses many questions, but it is in Christ that we find the answers. It is in this sense, Buttiglione continued, that Cardinal Ratzinger as prefect for the doctrinal congregation took action, not as some kind of disciplinarian, but as someone who wanted to preserve the essential elements of the Christian faith. A task he will surely continue to carry out.