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Giovedì, 3 aprile 1958


Our cordial greetings to you, honourable gentlemen. Visitors from Iceland come rarely indeed, and We like to hope that they feel all the more welcome for that. We recall with pleasure the visit last year of your illustrious President accompanied by his gracious consort; and today your parliament—the oldest parliamentary assembly in the world sends a goodly representation from its august body, flown in by the Chief of aviation. Thus an encouraging example has been set, and We look forward to the day when more of your fellow-citizens will be found mingling among the countless host of pilgrims, that come each year from all parts of the world to this eternal city,— city rich in historic and sacred memories beyond all others.

If your parliament dates back more than a thousand years, it is also interesting to note that this Holy See's first contact with Iceland was made by her intrepid missionaries more than nine hundred years ago. To your land of glistening snowfields, of geysers and volcanoes, they brought the saving message of divine truth, taught by Him, Whose redeeming passion and death the Christian world with grateful reverence is commemorating this week; and it is particulary consoling to Us to know that Our Venerable Brother, Our Vicar Apostolic in Iceland today, as was the first Bishop there in the eleventh century, is one of your own native sons.

You will be returning soon, honourable gentlemen, to your home in the far North; and We would ask you to bring Our paternal greetings to all your people. Tell them that the Common Father of all blesses them and prays that God's best gifts may enrich their lives, bringing peace and true happiness to their families and their country. May God protect you on your journey and bring you safely back to your dear ones.

*Discorsi e Radiomessaggi di Sua Santità Pio XII, XX,
Ventesimo anno di Pontificato, 2 marzo - 9 ottobre 1958, p. 55 (53)
Tipografia Poliglotta Vaticana.


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