ADDRESS OF JOHN PAUL II
Saturday, 19 June 1999
I am pleased to welcome you this morning, members of the Council of Christian Churches of Madagascar. You have wished to come to Rome in memory of the journey I made to your country 10 years ago. I cordially thank you for this act of courtesy to the Successor of Peter. Your visit reminds me of the warm welcome I was given by the Malagasy people and the fraternal meeting which brought together representatives of the different Christian denominations in Antananarivo.
I know that since then you have fostered collaboration between your different communities to make the united witness of Christ's disciples more living and real in serving all their compatriots. Thus you are joined in making a valuable contribution to the human and spiritual development of the whole nation.
I ardently hope that the Christians of the Great Island will continue with renewed zeal to deepen the bonds of charity and solidarity that unite them. May God grant that you may walk courageously on the ways of sincere love and ever more fraternal collaboration, so that the Lord's prayer, "that they may all be one" (Jn 17:21), may become an ever greater reality among Christians, in order that the world may believe in the One whom the Father sent!
From my heart I invoke an abundance of God's blessing on each of you, your families and the entire Malagasy people.