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Thursday, 5 September 1974


Venerable brother and dear friends,

Your visit here today is particularly gratifying to us. Only a few days ago we sent a message to your World Conference on Religion and Peace, meeting in Louvain. We assured you of our prayers and encouraged all the delegates to mobilize available energies and resources in order to build up peace. Finally we asked you to prepare the individual followers of the different religions to play their part and undertake a personal responsibility in the construction of peace.

Now that we have this most welcome opportunity of speaking with you, the representatives of our own religion, as well as of Shintoism and Buddhism in Japan, we would like to develop this call for the adequate preparation of the individual adherents of our religions to play their part in the search for peace. Peace must depend not only on the good will of religious and national leaders, but be anchored firmly and securely in the hearts of all men.

The religions represented here today, like all the great religions of the world, are rich in teaching and examples for men who sincerely seek to establish peace in their own hearts. According to the varying emphasis on our different beliefs we can find our own inner tranquillity in the contemplation of God’s beauty in the world he has created, by the mortification of our senses and the practice of asceticism and by making use of our privileged share in God’s life to overcome the legacy of Original Sin. A common emphasis is given to the need to liberate the things of the spirit and to give help to our fellow men.

May this liberation be truly a liberation from war and hate, and may we all help one another to reach mutual love and concord to attain peace on earth among all men whom God loves. In this way truly shall we all give glory to God.


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