ADDRESS OF THE HOLY FATHER
Saturday, 19 November 1988
I extend very cordial greetings to you, officers and men of HMS Intrepid and HMS Euryalus. It is a pleasure to welcome you to the Vatican. In a particular way I greet Admiral Sir Julian Oswald, Commander-in-Chief Fleet, and Lady Oswald.
Your presence here today reminds me of those words of the Psalmist: “Some sailed to the sea in ships / to trade on the mighty waters. / These men have seen the Lord’s deeds, / the wonders he does in the deep”.
In this passage from the Bible, we see how the experience of going to sea can prompt us to reflect on the power of God and the wonders of this creation. It can move us to a greater awareness of the presence of God in human events and in our own daily lives. I hope that this has been true for each of you during your time of service in the Royal Navy. I pray that your tour of duty, always at the service of peace, has also helped you to deepen your faith and your love of God. For, in the end, that is the most important thing in life. As Saint Paul says: “there are three things that last: faith, hope and love; and the greatest of these is love”. I will pray for you and your dear ones, asking the Lord to strengthen you in faith, hope and love. May he fill your hearts with abundant peace and joy. God be with you all.
© Copyright 1988 - Libreria Editrice Vaticana