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To the Honourable Emilio Colombo 
President of the Giuseppe Toniolo Institute

On the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the foundation of the Toniolo Institute, I would like to extend my good wishes and greetings to you and to all the members. With heartfelt sentiments, I join in the common thanksgiving to the Lord for the fruitful work done to encourage the presence of Italian Catholics in the world of culture and scientific research. The canonical erection of the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart and its juridical recognition by the State are, in fact, owed to the prophetic and tenacious activity of this praiseworthy institution, desired by Fr Agostino Gemelli and Mons. Francesco Olgiati and approved by Pope Benedict XV.

My venerable Predecessors have always expressed deep esteem for the Toniolo Institute, whose task is to guarantee that the university of Italian Catholics remains ever faithful to its twofold statutory purpose:  scientific research enlightened by faith, and the training of qualified Christian professionals who will be in full harmony with the Church's Magisterium, while respecting a legitimate plurality of views in the scientific field. The Supreme Pontiffs have not failed to show constant regard for the institute's dedication in always seeking to encourage in the academic community the spirit of collaboration and service necessary for productive scientific work, and to respond better to the expectations of Italian Pastors and Catholics.

In expressing keen appreciation of the consistent commitment with which the Toniolo Institute, even in particularly difficult moments, has been able to maintain unchanged the principles which inspired the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, while effectively serving the cause of culture and the Gospel in the Italian academic world, I hope that it can meet the challenges of the new millennium in fidelity to its great tradition, by combining full adherence to the Church's Magisterium, scientific rigour and far-sighted initiative.

With these sentiments, as I invoke from the Heart of Christ abundant Jubilee gifts of grace and holiness for you, Mr President, and for the members of the Toniolo Institute, I entrust you all to the motherly protection of Mary, Seat of Wisdom, and impart to everyone a special Apostolic Blessing.

From the Vatican, 24 June 2000.


© Copyright 2000 - Libreria Editrice Vaticana


Copyright © Dicastero per la Comunicazione - Libreria Editrice Vaticana