ADDRESS OF PAUL VI
It is with profound emotion and sincere gratitude that We, receive Your Excellency’s visit, and welcome you as first Ambassador of independent Malta to this Holy See.
We thank you for the lofty sentiments expressed in your discourse, with its reference to the great Apostle Paul, Patron of the Maltese people. It is noteworthy that the inspired word of God, in the Acts of the Apostles, mentions the social and spiritual virtues of the island’s inhabitants. Saint Luke wrote: «We then learned that the island was called Malta. And the natives showed us unusual kindness... They presented many gifts to us; and, when we sailed, they put on board whatever we needed» (28, 1-2; 10).
We renew the assurance of Our particular affection for the people of Malta, praying that they may ever grow in virtue, firmly preserve their Catholic traditions, and maintain their well-known fidelity and devotion to the Vicar of Christ and the Apostolic See.
To the Government of Malta, through Your Excellency’s good offices, We send prayerful wishes for prosperity, peace and progress. To you, We augur a most successful and fruitful mission, promising Your Excellency Our benevolent interest and solicitous assistance. Upon Malta and its beloved Hierarchy and people, We invoke Heaven’s richest graces, and to all We impart from Our heart the Apostolic Blessing.
*AAS 58 (1966), p.146.
Insegnamenti di Paolo VI, vol. IV, p.21.
L’Attivitą della Santa Sede, 1966 p.28.
L'Osservatore Romano 10-11.1.1966, p.1.