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Saturday, 13 April 2024



Dear brothers and sisters,

I am pleased to be able to receive you in this Vatican “City”, which, just like those you represent, preserves a rich heritage of which we are the custodians. It is a great responsibility, but also a beautiful vocation.

In this regard, I think that our interest in heritage cannot be limited to the artistic and cultural sphere, but should have a broader outlook, embracing the entirety of the person who receives this legacy and the peoples who have handed it down. The historical situations – with their lights and shadows – speak to us of real men and women, with authentic sentiments, who should be lessons of life for us, before being museum pieces.

They are the sufferings and longings of people who, over the course of time, built their own cities, the cross-fertilization of cultures and civilizations who have succeeded one another in them, and of course their faith in God, that makes their hearts beat with passion.

I ask the Lord to grant you, together with the beauty of your cities, the grace of transmitting faith, the hope and charity of your people. May the contemplation of the various monuments allow both those who live there and those who visit to reflect on the prudence and strength that made their creation possible. May they feel called upon by the lessons of justice and temperance that each historical situation holds. In this way, we will speak of peoples, of people, of a history that is not contemplated, but realized, with one eye on the past and the other on the future, in order to always have our hands in the present that questions us every day. God bless you. Thank you.


Holy See Press Office Bulletin, 13 April 2024

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