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Saturday, 18 October 1969


Mister Minister,

We are indeed honoured to receive a visit from a member of the Government of Malawi. We know of the great scenic beauty of this country, which looks radiantly down from west and south upon its immense lake. But for its people We have even greater admiration: they are endeavouring to develop their own resources, maintain good relations with other countries, and uphold the dignity of the human person in their own land and in the world.

The Church has the religious mission of bringing all men to the knowledge of Christ, and she has no temporal aims to pursue in the performance of this mission. Since the Gospel teaches that the human soul is superior in worth to all earthly things, she willingly lends her aid whenever there is question of raising men to a level more in accord with their true value. “Sharing the noblest aspirations of men, and suffering when she sees them not satisfied, she wishes to help them attain their full flowering, and that is why she offers men what she possesses as her characteristic attribute: a global vision of man and of the human race” (Populorum progressio, art. 13).

It is Our hope and trust that Malawi will bring to flower all that is best in its own traditions and in the traditions of Africa as a whole, and, respecting the values of the human person, the importance of the family, and the dignity of woman, will win for itself a development that will be truly integral: that is, one that promotes the good of every man and of the whole man (cf. Populorum progressio, art. 14).

Praying that God may inspire the people of Malawi with that firm determination, and assist them in its performance, We gladly invoke upon them the richest of heaven’s blessings, and requesting you to convey Our respectful greeting; to His Excellency the President of your country, We ask the Lord to bestow upon you and your colleagues His choicest graces and favours.


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