ADDRESS OF POPE JOHN PAUL II
Monday, 26 November 1984
I am happy to receive from Your Excellency the Letters accrediting you as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of The Gambia. I am grateful for the warm greetings that you have conveyed from His Excellency Alhaji Sir Dawda Kairaba Jawara. I reciprocate his good wishes and I ask you to assure His Excellency of my prayers for the well-being of all the citizens of your nation.
I have noted with satisfaction your reference to the Holy See’s Charter of the Rights of the Family. Through this document, which was principally addressed to governments and those responsible for the common good, the Church has emphasized those essential rights that are expressed in the human conscience and further enlightened by divine revelation. By insisting on the irreplaceable contribution of the family to society, the Church seeks to do all that she can to encourage, support and assist families in fulfilling the duties that are proper to them, especially in the promotion of whatever may benefit the permanency of the marriage bond and enhance the welfare of children.
I am therefore particularly happy to receive confirmation from you of your country’s continuing commitment to the fostering and safeguarding of the human rights that are fundamental to each person and every family.
Permit me to take this occasion to repeat what I said in my Apostolic Exhortation "Familiaris Consortio": "In view of the worldwide dimension of various social questions nowadays, the family has seen its role with regard to the development of society extended in a completely new way: it now also involves cooperating for a new international order, since it is only in worldwide solidarity that the enormous and dramatic issues of world justice, the freedom of peoples and the peace of humanity can be dealt with and solved".
It is my fervent hope that your country will continue to promote among the community of nations this worldwide solidarity, founded upon healthy and vigorous family life, so that the tensions that presently threaten the international community may be reduced.
Your Excellency, you may be assured of the assistance and cooperation of the Holy See throughout your mission.
Upon yourself and the noble nation which you represent I invoke the abundant blessings of Almighty God. May God bless The Gambia.
*AAS 77 (1985), p. 486-487.
Insegnamenti di Giovanni Paolo II, vol.VII, 2 pp. 1309-1310.
L'Attivitą della Santa Sede 1984 p. 906.
L’Osservatore Romano 26-27.11.1984 p.5.
L'Osservatore Romano. Weekly Edition in English n.52-53 p.5.