RADIO ADDRESS OF THE POPE JOHN PAUL II
Thursday, 10 May 1984
To my dear brothers and sisters in Vietnam.
As I return from my pastoral visit to Korea, Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands, I find myself near Vietnam. And I very much wish to greet all the people of that land which I love, and to express to them my good will and sentiments of peace, my encouragement and my cordial best wishes.
Every human being, every people with its culture, has its own place in the benevolent eyes of the Catholic—universal—Church, and in the heart of the one who is that Church's Pastor. This is the Gospel of love received from Jesus Christ : it embraces all nations in a spirit of service, bringing them a word of salvation and fraternal help. In the case of Vietnam, everyone knows and appreciates the courage in working, the tenacity in difficulties, the family sense and the other natural virtues of which you give proof. In your country which has cruelly suffered the trials of war, yοu have had to work hard at the rebuilding of the country ; yοu have had to make great efforts in order to face the various problems of education, health and so on. The Church takes a lively interest in these efforts marked by solidarity, and she encourages them. She hopes that they will succeed in giving to every individual not only food and education but also the opportunity to develop freely each one's best potentialities, including religious aspiration, and in a climate of peace with the other nations that are seeking, like Vietnam, to live in tranquillity and dignity.
This is certainly what is desired by the many Vietnamese among you who share the Christian faith. It is you, dear Catholic brothers and sisters, whom I now address. Since the beginning of evangelization, yοu have formed living communities, rich in the faith of the whole Church well assimilated by the genius of your Vietnamese culture, ardent in prayer, generous in a charity open to all. To your Bishops and priests, to your men and women religious, to the mothers and fathers of families, to the children, the young people and the aged, and especially those who are suffering illness or other difficult conditions of life, I wish to express my very special affection. Every day, through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, I commend you to the Lord, asking him to continue to give yοu, together with the courage of faith, hope and peace. May your closeness to your Bishops never fail, as yοu stay close to Jesus Christ and his Church ! And I pray that yοu will always have practical opportunities for professing and living your faith. The guarantee of these opportunities does honor to a country, and manifests its concern for justice, and favors the realization of the spiritual values so necessary for its development.
The whole Church has her eyes fixed upon yοu. In her yοu have a special place. She is proud of yοu, knowing the Christian faith that dwells in your midst, together with loyal love for your nation. She encourages yοu to build, together with your compatriots, a better future for all. And she willingly encourages the Catholic movements and international bodies to provide yοu with unselfish aid. I am happy to be able today to assure you of this personally, and to send to yοu with all my heart my Apostolic Blessing.
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