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Monday, 16 April 1984


Dear Friends,

it gives me great pleasure to welcome you to the Vatican as members of the British-Italian Parliamentary Group from the United Kingdom.

Almost two years have passed since my pastoral visit to Great Britain. Your presence here today brings back memories of those six glorious days in which not only the Catholics but all the people of your country made me welcome and enabled me to experience the genuine warmth of their hospitality. For me it was a time of intense dialogue with your religious and civic traditions.

As Members of Parliament you are bearers of a high and responsible mission of service to the common good. In a world that has become increasingly more complex, your task is certainly not an easy one. The leaders of nations and those in public life at times find it difficult even to identify what really constitutes that common good, in order to pursue it and safeguard it. For this reason it becomes imperative continually to rediscover the human and moral values that make a people truly great and genuinely happy.

In a world where people are more than ever conscious of their personal dignity and God-given rights, it is your task to chart the legislative path that will create conditions that best ensure the common good. The lives of people, their human dignity, their ability to fulfil their duties and responsibilities are intimately linked to the conditions of society that are created by legislation. The good of individuals and peoples has a direct influence on the international scene and hence affects the issue of world peace. I mention these things, dear friends, to emphasize the gravity of your responsibilities as legislators and the magnitude of the service that you are able to render to your country and to the world.

I would add one more point: as you face your responsibilities and fulfil your service, with respect for all the God-given rights of humanity, you are at the same time in a position to promote a sound legislative tradition to be handed on as a gift to those who will come after you. In a word, your activities offer possibilities for great personal fulfilment because they give excellent opportunities to make a lasting contribution to the well-being of mankind.

I pray to almighty God to grant you wisdom and fortitude in your personal and public lives. May he abundantly bless your families and all those whom you represent, with his gifts of truth and strength and peace.


Copyright © Libreria Editrice Vaticana


Copyright © Dicastero per la Comunicazione - Libreria Editrice Vaticana