ADDRESS OF JOHN PAUL II
Friday 1 February 2002
1. I warmly greet you with a sense of gratitude for the goals that motivate you.
I likewise greet the other committee members: Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, Cardinal Dionigi Tettamanzi, Dr Camdessus, Ambassador Bettini, President of CAEL, and the other speakers.
St Thomas impressed his age with his genius and continues to be an outstanding figure for his research and love for the truth that dominate his admirable philosophical and theological edifice.
2. I am pleased to encourage your intention of launching a new enterprise that will be undertaken by an internatonal team of young people, guided by more mature scholars: the elaboration of a Bicultural Thomistic Lexicon that, in twenty or thirty years, will translate all the terms of the enormous Lexicon of St Thomas into modern words.
You have chosen the work of Aquinas as a true and proper encyclopedia of his time, summary of 40 centuries of Mediterranean culture: Jewish, Greek, Latin, Arab and Christian. Indeed the Bicultural Thomistic Lexicon will consider in the opus of St Thomas above all what he has in common with authors who were his contemporaries.
In St Thomas' sapiential vision, even though certain parts of it depend on the science of his time, the cosmos appears to be directed by a single universal programme, in which everything is organically connected. It is a programme incorporated into nature by the Divine Thought, the Creator of the human intelligence that invented information technology.
I entrust the work you are about to begin to divine Providence, as I wholeheartedly impart my affectionate Blessing to those present and to their families.