ADDRESS OF HIS HOLINESS JOHN PAUL II
Dear Knights of Columbus,
It gives me great pleasure to be with you on the occasion of my pastoral visit to the United States. I thank you most sincerely for the respect and love which you have manifested toward me as Successor of Peter, Bishop of Rome and Pastor of the universal Church.
In the person of the Supreme Knight and the Members of the Supreme Board, I greet all the Knights of Columbus: the more than 1,300,000 Catholic laymen all over the world, who display a spirit of profound attachment to their Christian faith and of loyalty to the Apostolic See.
Many times in the past, and again today, you have given expression to your solidarity with the mission of the Pope. I see in your support a further proof—if further proof were ever necessary—of your awareness that the Knights of Columbus highly value their vocation to be part of the evangelization effort of the Church. I am happy to recall here what my revered predecessor, Paul VI, said about this task in his Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Nuntiandi, as he emphasized the specific role of the laity : "Their own field of evangelizing activity is the vast and complicated world of politics, society and economics, but also the world of culture, of the sciences and the arts, of international life, of the mass media. It also includes other realities which are open to evangelization, such as human love, the family, the education of children and adolescents, professional work and suffering" (no. 70) .
These words of one who never ceased to encourage you clearly indicate the road which your association must travel. I am aware of the many efforts you make to promote the use of mass media for the spreading of the Gospel and for the wider diffusion of my own messages. May the Lord reward you, and through your efforts bring forth abundant fruits of evangelization in the Church. May your dedicated activity in turn help you to realize in yourselves those interior attitudes without which no one can truly evangelize: trust in the power of the Holy Spirit, true holiness of life, deep concern for truth, and an ever increasing love for God's children.
May the Lord's blessing be upon you, upon your families and upon all the Knights of Columbus.
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