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To Our Venerable Brother Alfonso López Trujillo
Cardinal of the Holy Roman Church
President of the Pontifical Council for the Family

Everyone knows that family life has been and is a subject of great concern in our entire Papacy. Many times, in fact, we have defended it in our discourses and documents and promoted it with our suggestions and advice.

For this reason, we can only be extremely pleased that the next World Meeting of Families will take place in Manila from January 22nd to the 26th on the theme, "The Christian Family: Good News for the Third Millennium". In fact, only starting from a healthy, solid situation of the human family is it possible to hope for and expect a better world where people will live in tranquillity and prosperity. Hence, we are already reflecting on the beauty of the Meeting and its plentiful results towards this sublime end.

Although we will be present throughout the Meeting with our pastoral sentiment and will follow all the discussions carefully from afar, and while we will address all the participants in the Meeting, we nonetheless want one of our most faithful Collaborators to be present in our place during those propitious days to represent our person publicly and speak with our voice.

We cannot find anyone more suitable to carry out this laudable task than you, Venerable Brother. Through our wishes, for the past twelve years, you have presided over the Pontifical Council for the Family from which the Church has derived so much benefit for human families through your activity. Therefore, with this Letter, with great confidence, I hereby appoint you as Papal Legate to the Fourth World Meeting of Families in Manila next January on the days mentioned earlier.

You will be present on our behalf, and with our voice and spirit you will greet all the participants to whom you will convey our Apostolic Blessing in the hopes that abundant spiritual fruits will derive from the Meeting to strengthen and bring concrete prosperity to human families everywhere around the world.

In the meantime, Venerable Brother, with our prayers and good wishes, we accompany you as you are about to leave for this lofty assignment so that you will carry out this mission in our name with the greatest possible success and be beneficial for individuals, families and, at the same time, for the whole Church.

From the Vatican, the 27th day of December of the year 2002, the twenty-fifth of Our Papacy.


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