GREETING OF JOHN PAUL II
Tuesday, 2 December 2003
I am pleased to welcome you, the participants in the Colloquium on "Truth, Justice, Love, Freedom: Pillars of Peace". In a particular way I greet the Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, Archbishop Pier Luigi Celata, and the Head of the Organization for Islamic Culture and Communications in Tehran, Ayatollah Mahmoud Mohammadi Araqi. I am grateful to both institutions for sponsoring this event, the fourth such Colloquium organized by them.
Today there is an especially urgent need for dialogue, understanding and cooperation between the world’s great religions, especially Christianity and Islam. Religion is in fact called to build bridges between individuals, peoples and cultures, to be a sign of hope for humanity. I appeal to you, and to all men and women of good will, to join your voices with mine as I repeat that the holy name of God must never be used to incite violence or terrorism, to promote hatred or exclusion.
I am confident that your continued dialogue and cooperation, of which this Colloquium is an eloquent example, will do much to help Christians and Muslims to be ever more effective instruments of peace in our world. May Almighty God bless your efforts, and may he grant to all mankind the courage and strength to embrace truth, justice, love and freedom as true pillars of peace.