Speeches 1984 - Saturday, 28 April 1984
A voi, venerati fratelli nell’episcopato, a voi, cari sacerdoti, a voi tutti membri del popolo di Dio, convenuti stamani in quest’aula, giunga il mio saluto affettuoso e grato!
1. Rivolgo innanzitutto la mia parola ai partecipanti al Convegno di pastorale familiare organizzato dalla Commissione-Famiglia della Conferenza episcopale italiana, che ho il piacere di accogliere stamane in un incontro, da cui il mio animo trae particolare motivo di gioia.
Il tema scelto, “Famiglia e vita di fede”, è della più grande importanza e attualità e costituisce un eccellente modo di penetrare nell’intenzione profonda dell’Anno Santo da poco concluso. Infatti, nulla può preparare meglio l’avvento del terzo millennio che la formazione di numerose famiglie nella loro fede. L’adesione a Cristo di quanti vivranno allora è in gestazione già oggi nel seno delle famiglie cristiane.
2. La famiglia cristiana, come “piccola Chiesa”, è chiamata a generare la fede nei suoi membri e a trasmetterla efficacemente di generazione in generazione. Per raggiungere questo scopo si fonda sulla vocazione che il Creatore “dall’inizio le ha affidato e sulla grazia sacramentale, con cui Cristo, il Redentore, l’ha arricchita per renderla capace di compiere la fondamentale missione assegnatale a servizio dell’uomo, della società e della Chiesa” (cf. Ioannis Pauli PP. II , Familiaris Consortio FC 13).
La trasmissione della fede è un compito legato essenzialmente alla vocazione del matrimonio cristiano, essendo ogni matrimonio per sua costituzione orientato alla generazione ed educazione della prole. L’educazione è, in certo qual modo, la continuazione normale e necessaria della generazione della vita. È per questo che i genitori sono, per diritto e per dovere, i “primi e principali educatori dei propri figli” (Gravissimum Educationis GE 3 Ioannis Pauli PP. II , Familiaris Consortio FC 36 Carta dei diritti della famiglia, art. 5). L’educazione, che è un processo graduale, con diverse tappe in armonia con la crescita della persona, include non solo gli elementi intellettuali, ma anche la coltivazione delle attitudini morali e dei valori spirituali che costituiscono la realtà più nobile e profonda dell’essere umano. Include, pertanto, in modo specialissimo, quando i genitori sono credenti, la trasmissione e l’educazione della fede, la dimensione religiosa della persona che la pone in contatto con Dio stesso, origine, fondamento e fine di tutta la sua vita, e con Gesù Cristo, salvatore e redentore. Non c’è bene più grande che i genitori possano trasmettere ai propri figli di quello di una fede profonda.
Per le peculiari caratteristiche della fede - che in definitiva è sempre un dono di Dio - il dovere dei genitori circa la sua trasmissione si basa essenzialmente sulla forza della loro testimonianza nell’ambito della famiglia. Sarà compito primario della pastorale della famiglia aiutare i genitori ad approfondire la loro fede in modo che essa giunga a permeare le diverse espressioni della vita familiare.
3. Bisogna aiutare gli sposi a scoprire, negli avvenimenti della vita coniugale e familiare, la presenza e l’azione di Dio, il quale incessantemente ama ed educa i suoi figli. Bisogna aiutarli a maturare la loro fede per riuscire a vedere nella gioia di un incontro, nel dolore di una malattia, nella riuscita e nel fallimento di un’attività, nel lavoro, nella solidarietà familiare, in tutti i momenti grandi e piccoli della vita, altrettante occasioni per adorare il Dio dell’alleanza, per corrispondere al suo amore e vivere una familiarità filiale e sponsale con lui, in modo che si realizzi sempre più l’unità tra fede e vita.
Lavorate intensamente per il bene delle famiglie! Aiutatele nel miglior modo possibile a fortificare la loro fede e a trasmetterla efficacemente ai figli.
Vi affido alla protezione di Maria santissima, madre ed educatrice e vi imparto di cuore la mia benedizione.
Ai membri dell’“Hospitalité Notre-Dame” di Lourdes con i rappresentanti dell’UNITALSI
Chers amis de l’Hospitalité de Lourdes,
je suis heureux de vous recevoir ici, avec les représentants de l’UNITALSI. Votre venue réveille en moi le souvenir de notre rencontre de l’an dernier à Lourdes, avec les malades. Vous leur permettez l’expérience du pèlerinage; vous les accueillez au lieu où la Vierge ne cesse d’appeler à la prière, à la pénitence, à l’Eucharistie, à la vie fraternelle de l’Eglise.
Responsables et conseillers, vous représentez des milliers d’hommes et de femmes qui entendent l’appel du Seigneur à servir ces pauvres. Je voudrais vous encourager tous dans votre action à Lourdes aussi bien que dans vos diocèses le reste du temps.
Vous soulignez souvent que l’engagement pris dans l’Hospitalité constitue une réponse à un appel. C’est une manière de se rendre disciples du Christ: vous vous faites avec Lui les serviteurs de vos frères, dans les tâches humbles qui permettent au malade de vivre le dépaysement ou dans l’animation spirituelle des rassemblements. Et vous contribuez aussi à toute la vie des sanctuaires.
En cela, vous êtes des témoins de ce que vivent les plus éprouvés d’entre nous. Une malade, au nom des autres, me disait l’an passé: “Nous sommes là avec nos souffrances, physiques et morales, avec nos limites, nos détresses, nos lassitudes, nos incertitudes, nos peurs et aussi avec toute notre espérance”. Soyez donc à l’écoute de toute souffrance, et sachez découvrir l’espérance, aidez à la faire naître, aidez à mieux en recevoir le don. Par votre présence, souvent discrète, soyez les Bons Samaritains, humbles témoins de l’Evangile de la souffrance. Et soyez ceux qui reconnaissent le Christ, lui qui s’identifie à ces petits qui sont ses frères (Mt 25,40)! Soyez les témoins de la tendresse maternelle de Marie, si vivement ressentie à Lourdes!
Dans les termes de votre acte de consécration, nous l’invoquons: “Bénie soit la Sainte et Immaculée Conception de la Bienheureuse Marie, Mère de Dieu”! Qu’elle vous aide à puiser aux sources de la prière et de la Parole de Dieu l’esprit de votre association vivante et généreuse! Et de tout coeur je vous donne ma Bénédiction Apostolique.
Ai responsabili del “Rinnovamento Carismatico Cattolico”
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
1. With all my heart I welcome you to Rome, in the joy of the Risen Christ. Your meeting in Rome, at the centre of the Church, comes at the time when she is giving thanks to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ for the Sacrifice of his Son and for the action of the Holy Spirit, which fill her with new life.
As I said in my Easter Message, the Holy Door of the Jubilee Year of the Redemption has now been closed, but we must keep remembering that at Easter the door of Christ’s tomb was opened once and for all. He who is the Resurrection and the Life knows nothing of closed doors, for he has conquered sin and death. Yet because of human freedom, many doors do not open to him. And for this reason I ask you, and all the members of the Charismatic Renewal, to continue to cry aloud to the world with me: Open the doors to the Redeemer!
The Church’s mission is to proclaim Christ to the world. And you share effectively in this mission insofar as your groups and communities are rooted in the local Churches, in your dioceses and parishes.
2. The Jubilee Year of the Redemption has brought us back to the source, to the "heart of the Church", the only source that can nourish our Christian life. It has enabled the People of God throughout the world to rediscover the importance of the sacraments, notably the sacraments of Penance and the Eucharist. Because they are the full enactment of the word of God, they are the most precious gifts that he has given to us in his Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.
I am particularly pleased that you are concentrating on the sacraments in you reflections. This is of the greatest significance, for all your spiritual strivings must be directed to a personal encounter of each individual with the Lord, in the community of the Church, which through the power of the Holy Spirit is herself the great sacrament of salvation.
3. Real openness to the Holy Spirit as he vivifies and guides. the Church helps you to live in union with the Lord Jesus. It is your strength and your special treasure, and you are striving to exercise it in different ways. But this gift from God is also a fragile treasure and one which you must take special care of. It is for this reason that your international meeting at the centre of the Church, at a time so strongly marked by the Jubilee of the Redemption, can be of decisive importance for the whole Catholic Charismatic Renewal.
I would interpret your presence here, and your choice of themes for your discussions, as a decision to return to the source: to centre your whole lives on the encounter with the Redeemer in his sacraments. It is precisely the openness of the human heart to the sacramental grace that God offers you in the Church which enables you to meet Christ in a real and lasting way, to respond to his loving command: "Remain in my love" (Jn 15,9).
4. I mentioned the fact that you are rooted in your local Churches. And the Church herself as a sacramental reality communicates the grace of the sacraments through the ministry of priests in the local Churches. It is at the sacramental heart of the Church, and at the sacramental heart of your local Churches, that your life as baptized and confirmed Christians can be ceaselessly renewed - that life which in the power of the Spirit makes you witnesses to Christ the Redeemer.
Soon we shall celebrate Pentecost. In the midst of the Apostles there is Mary, the one who accepted the Holy Spirit’s greatest gift: the life of Jesus. May she who thus became the Mother of the Church be in a special way your Mother and the Model of Renewal in the Church. Let us entrust to her our lives, our commitment and our desire to grow in the love of Jesus Christ and in fidelity to his holy Church.
Ad un gruppo di studenti del Pontificio Collegio Americano del Nord
I offer a cordial greeting to the students of the North American College who will be ordained deacons this week, and to their families and friends who have come to Rome for this happy occasion. Dear young men, ordination to the diaconate is a special call to serve God and his people. But it is also a unique invitation to grow more deeply in holiness. Be men of prayer; men who love God generously and single-heartedly. And may the Lord who begins this good work in you bring it to completion.
Ad un folto pellegrinaggio di lavoratori spagnoli emigrati in diversi Paesi europei
Queridos hermanos y hermanas,
con verdadero placer recibo hoy a vuestro numeroso grupo, que comprende emigrantes españoles residentes en varios Países de Europa, particularmente en Bélgica, Francia, Alemania Federal, Inglaterra, Holanda y Suiza.
Me alegra también que os acompañan unos treinta sacerdotes, que están encargados establemente de vuestra asistencia religiosa. Y para este encuentro romano contáis asimismo con la presencia cualificada - que vosotros, vuestros capellanes y yo mismo valoramos tan profundamente - de una representación de los Obispos de España que, a través de la Comisión Episcopal de Migraciones, siguen la problemática que plantea vuestra condición especifica de vida.
Este hecho de la cercanía a vosotros, queridos emigrantes, de vuestros Obispos y sacerdotes me hace dar gracias al Señor, porque hay en ello una realidad eclesial de gran significado. En efecto, a medida que el fenómeno migratorio - transeúnte o más estable - se ha desarrollado en las pasadas décadas, la Iglesia ha ido tomando conciencia más clara de la importancia del mismo y de los planteamientos pastorales que exigía. Con ello van quedando atrás situaciones dolorosas de grupos emigrantes que a las dificultades impuestas por el desarraigo y la vida en ambientes desconocidos, sumaban no leves problemas para el normal ejercicio de su vida cristiana.
Por ello, mi primera palabra de aliento quiere ser para vuestros Obispos y capellanes, a fin de que traten de perfeccionar cada vez más el sistema de asistencia a los emigrantes y valoren en toda su profundidad el significado apostólico de una vida entregada generosa y sacrificadamente al servicio de esas Iglesias de la dispersión que son el mundo de las migraciones. ¡Cuánta fuerza moral, cuánto aliento, cuánta esperanza pueden ellos suscitar, y cuántas penas o problemas pueden mitigar con su cercanía y con la oportuna palabra de fe, ofrecida en espíritu de amor cristiano y fraterno!
Conozco por experiencia personal cuáles y cuántas son las dificultades que se interponen en vuestra vida de mujeres y hombres que viven lejos de la familia, a veces de los propios hijos o de los lugares de origen (Ioannis Pauli PP. II, Laborem Exercens LE 23). No dudaría, por ello, en calificar vuestra condición de existencia como frecuentemente dura en el aspecto humano y llena de riesgos en el religioso.
Pensad, sin embargo, en vuestra dignidad de seres humanos, que a los ojos de Dios no cede a la de ningún otro hombre, sea dueño o dependiente, empresario o trabajador, de la propia o de otra Nación.
Dios y la Iglesia ven con honda simpatía vuestro deseo y esfuerzo por mejorar vuestra condición de vida personal, familiar y social. Es una tendencia noble, valiosa, digna del mayor respecto y estima por parte de todos, de tal modo que se cumplan las debidas condiciones de equidad y justicia a las que tenéis derecho (Ioannis Pauli PP. II, Laborem Exercens LE 23)..
Pero la Iglesia y yo mismo os animamos también a no olvidar nunca vuestra condición de hijos de Dios, de hermanos en Cristo, de seres con un destino eterno al que Cristo Resucitado nos llama (Eiusdem, Redemptor Hominis RH 18 Laborem Exercens, 27). Con esa conciencia, buscad todo lo que os eleva y dignifica, pero no abandonéis vuestra fe cristiana, compartidla con vuestros compañeros de trabajo y de ambiente social; y sed solidarios entre vosotros mismos, como testimonio de vivencia práctica de la fraternidad cristiana.
Con estos deseos y asegurándoos un especial recuerdo en mis plegarias por vosotros, por vuestros hijos y familias, por vuestros compañeros de trabajo y particularmente por cuántos se dedican a vuestra asistencia religiosa, os imparto de corazón la Bendición Apostólica.
Fairbanks Airport (Alaska)
Wednesday, 2 May 1984
Praised be Jesus Christ!
Mr. President, dear people of Alaska, esteemed citizens of America,
1. It gives me great pleasure to visit Alaska once again, and from this northern State to send a greeting of special warmth and affection to all the citizens of the United States of America. As you know, today I have begun a pastoral journey that will take me to Korea, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands and Thailand. And I am delighted that this pilgrimage enables me to stop here in Fairbanks and to be among you!
I am deeply honored by the presence of President Reagan, who himself is just returning from an important trip to China. Mr. President, I thank you for your kind welcome on my arrival, and I wish to reaffirm through you my friendship and esteem for all the citizens of your great nation.
My thanks go as well to Bishop Whelan for his much appreciated invitation to the Diocese of Fairbanks. I also extend my good wishes to Bishop Kaniecki, and I pray that the Lord will grant him many joyful years of service to the Church. I would also offer a word of greeting to the Cardinal and Bishops of the United States Episcopal Conference who have shown their fraternal union with me by coming here on this happy occasion.
2. When I arrived on my first visit to your beautiful State, dear people of Alaska, I remember being welcomed by a lovely little child, Mollie Marie, who reached out and handed me a bouquet of forget-me-nots, your State flower. Shortly afterwards, that little girl was called home to her heavenly Father, but her loving gesture is not forgotten and her memory is held in blessing.
I found in what she did at that time a living truth about the people of the vast Alaskan territory: that in your thoughts and in your prayers you remember the Pope. Today I am here in person to give you the assurance that I have not forgotten you. Even when I am miles away, I hold the people of Alaska and those of the whole of the United States close to me in my heart. I do not forget you, for we are linked together by bonds of friendship, of faith and of love.
3. In some ways, Alaska can be considered today as a cross-roads of the world. President Reagan is returning from visiting the beloved people of China, even as I am making my way to a neighboring area in the Far East. The city of Fairbanks reminds us also of another direction for it is called "The Heart of the Golden North". Here in this vast State sixty-five languages are spoken and peoples of many diverse backgrounds find a common home with the Aleuts, Eskimos and Indians.
This wonderful diversity provides the context in which each person, each family, each ethnic group is challenged to live in harmony and concord, one with the other.
4. To achieve this aim requires a constant openness to each other on the part of each individual and group. An openness of heart, a readiness to accept differences, and an ability to listen to each other’s viewpoint without prejudice. Openness to others, by its very nature, excludes selfishness in any form. It is expressed in a dialogue that is honest and frank-one that is based on mutual respect. Openness to others begins in the heart.
As I stated at the beginning of this year in my Message for the World Day of Peace, if men and women hope to transform society, they must begin by changing their own hearts first. Only with a "new heart" can one rediscover "clear-sightedness and impartiality with freedom of spirit, the sense of justice with respect to the rights of man, the sense of equity with global solidarity between the rich and the poor, mutual trust and fraternal love" (Ioannis Pauli PP. II, Nuntius scripto datus ob diem I mensis Ianuarii anni MCMLXXXIV, paci inter nationes fovendae dicatum, 3, die 8 dec. 1983: Insegnamenti di Giovanni Paolo II, VI, 2 (1983) 1282).
Here in Fairbanks you have the opportunity to rediscover such values and to express them in your harmonious relationship with your neighbor - which reflects the stupendous harmony of nature which pervades this region.
May God grant you the strength to express this harmony in your own lives, in your relationship with others. May he give you the courage to share generously and selflessly the blessings that you yourselves have received in abundance.
God bless America!
Thursday, 3 May 1984
Your Excellency the President of the Republic,
Beloved People of Korea,
1. "Is it not a joy indeed to have a friend come from afar?". We hear these words in the opening lines of Confucius’ Analects. May I echo them by saying: Is it not a great joy indeed to go to visit a far-off friend?
The gracious words of the President and the warm welcome accorded me by all of you, my dear friends in Korea, move me very deeply. For, ever since assuming the office of Peter’s Successor in Rome some five years ago, I have always prayed that one day I might be granted the grace and joy of coming to visit the wonderful land and the dear people of Korea. And I have always felt particularly close to you in my heart. And now here I am, come as your friend, and as an apostle of peace - of God’s own peace - to your entire land.
2. Yours is a beautiful land that through trials and tempests of a venerable history has known how to emerge ever new, full of life and youth. Yours is a proud and sturdy people which, in meeting great cultures and neighboring powers, has remained true to its personal identity, bearing splendid fruits in art, religion, and human living. Your ancestors embraced such overwhelming spiritual worlds as Confucianism and Buddhism, yet made them truly their own, enhanced them, lived them and even transmitted them to others. Wonhyo and Sosan, T’oege and Yulgok eloquently express this feat.
So also today the marvellous flowering of the Christian faith in Korea promises to bring spiritual enrichment both to yourselves and to others. The Bicentennial of the Catholic Church in your country gives me the occasion to proclaim that faith in Jesus Christ can indeed bring that enrichment to the culture, wisdom and dignity of the Korean people.
3. Yours is an open heart full of human warmth, forbearance, and humor; a generous heart that has both suffered and loved much. never giving up hope. Nor would these eminent figures alone have borne such admirable fruits. They could do so only as the sons of a great and good people, yourselves, who in the daily life of loving and sharing have ever striven to seek the truth.
Today, Korea is known and admired by all for its courage, its industry, and its will to build up a model nation from the ashes. The tragic division of a once peaceful people imposed from without, the deep wounds from the Korean Conflict, and further tragedies of more recent years - all this cannot, however, dampen or break your will to overcome obstacles and to be reunited again as one happy family.
The untold sacrifices made to achieve this end through rapid industrialization and economic growth will, I sincerely hope, bring about first of all a more human society of true justice and peace, where all life is upheld as sacrosanct, where to live is to work for the good of others, where to govern is to serve, where no one is used as a tool, no one left out and no one downtrodden, where all can live in real brotherhood.
Thus Korea will be ever more admired as a people that achieves a progress and prosperity in which everyone is loved and respected in his or her full human dignity as a child of God, to the great honor of the nation.
We know that, in order to be fully human, man must transcend himself, and seek the ultimate reality and meaning of life. This was the witness of a Yi Ch’adon in your own heritage. So it is, in another way, the witness of the hundred and three Martyrs of Korea, outstanding among ten thousand others, who followed the footsteps of Jesus of Nazareth in dying for the truth of eternal life.
Permit me, at this time, to extend my heartfelt good wishes to the venerable Buddhist community about to celebrate on the eighth of May the Coming of Buddha. I also desire to extend fraternal greetings to the Protestant community on their Centenary of generous service and witness in this land.
4. I pray that your beloved fatherland, now tragically divided into two for over a generation, will be reunited as one family, not through confrontation and hostility, but through dialogue, mutual trust, and brotherly love, giving the lie to a world more and more given to mistrust, hatred, and the violence of arms. And all the sufferings of the past and present will not have been in vain, along the road of purification that leads to resurrection and new life.
I thank you again for your warm hospitality. It is indeed as a friend that I come from afar, with a message of respect and esteem, and immense hope for the future. Upon you and your families and all the families of the Korean Peninsula I invoke God’s blessings of peace, friendship and love.
Seoul (Korea) - Thursday, 3 May 1984
Dear Brothers in the Episcopate,
1. We are here together to perform an act proper to the Episcopate, to offer to God the Church in Korea. We do so through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, "the chief Shepherd" (1 Petr. 5, 4) of the Church and the Shepherd and Bishop of our souls (Cf. Ibid.2, 25). We do so in order to give full meaning to the Bicentennial celebration, to proclaim publicly that the Church belongs to Christ - the Church that he founded on Peter and called his own: "You are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church" (Mt 16,18). But the Church, dear Brothers, is likewise "built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure is joined together and grow into a holy temple in the Lord" (Ep 2,20-21).
This is a special hour in the history of the Church in Korea. It is an hour for the Bishops as successors of the Apostles to live their apostolic identity in the Church: to proclaim anew the nature of the Church, to assert her priorities, to manifest and exemplify her holiness. The celebration of your Bicentennial is centered on the exaltation of your holy ones, your martyrs, your saints. By God’s providence three of your predecessors, three of the Bishops of Korea, are inscribed among the hundred and three Martyrs who will be canonized next Sunday. The example of pastoral love and holiness of life given by Bishop Imbert, Bishop Berneux and Bishop Daveluy has special meaning for your own lives today. It is also an encouragement and a solemn challenge to every Korean Bishop who will ever live, to every man whom God will ever call to shepherd his people as a Bishop in this land. Venerable and dear Brothers in our Lord Jesus Christ: before the witness of your Martyrs and all your holy ancestors this is the hour when the Lord Jesus calls you to ever greater holiness of life.
2. It was in holiness of life that your predecessors, together with their priests, religious and laity, consolidated the life of the Church in this peninsula, a Church which yearned for pastoral care, and which the pioneering laity had already generously built up in faith and love. I wish today to pay a debt of gratitude to the Bishops of Korea, past and present, for the holiness that you have exemplified, for the holiness which has given birth to zeal, and for the many works of God which zeal has produced. In doing so, I express gratitude, together with you, to the Lord Jesus who reminds us of the principle of all fruitful apostolic activity: "I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in me, and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing" (Jn 15,5).
In this hour of thanksgiving I am thinking of the sacrifices which zeal has made possible, of the vast amount of service which has been rendered in the name of Christ, of the love which has motivated so many, not only to die for the Faith, but to live and work and suffer so that the revelation of God’s word might become the wisdom of your people, and so that the Incarnate Word, Christ himself, might become ever more a light to this land. On behalf of the universal Church I express gratitude through you the Bishops to the whole Church in Korea for the achievements of two centuries of holiness, culminating in the zeal with which you are celebrating your Bicentennial.
3. With profound admiration I acknowledge the present vitality of your parishes and various movements, the excellent school and hospital services, the many fine parish buildings and other structures, coupled, above all, with the spiritual fervour, community spirit and missionary zeal of your people. I note with joy your wise Bicentennial Plan, and I willingly bless all your systematic and sustained efforts on behalf of the family, the program of evangelization of neighbour, the building up of the parish and the community, the consolidation of the diocese and finally the ecclesial solidarity on the national and universal level. Yes, in union with the universal Church, you are making a splendid contribution to the growth of the Body of Christ in Korea and throughout the world. And in God’s providence, thanks to the mystery of the Communion of Saints, the spiritual dynamism produced by conversion and holiness of life has effects beyond geographical limits and external obstacles. Saint Paul points out to us - and it is forever true: "There is no chaining the word of God" (2Tm 2,9).
4. As for the future, Brethren, the holiness of the Church must continue to be the priority of your lives and the inspiration of all your activities. All the structures of the Church, all the services she renders - which are themselves bound up with the fruitful witness and generosity of your Martyrs - are linked to holiness of life and to that zeal which only holiness can make possible and sustain over a long period of time. The effectiveness of your pastoral leadership depends on the measure of your holiness - your union with the Christ who repeats to you today: "If you abide in me and my words abide in you... it shall be done for you" (Jn 15,7).
Your Bicentennial brings with it a call to action for the sake of the Gospel. But in the life of the Church every call to action is a call to holiness, to union with God and consequently a call to prayer, which is the very expression of union with God. Your Bicentennial is a call to prayer throughout Korea. In prayer you will strengthen faith, the faith that you the Bishops are called to proclaim as Doctores Fidei, the faith that leads to justification and to eternal life. Your leadership as pastors of a flock gathered around the one Shepherd, Jesus Christ, will never be more prophetic than in the reassuring, encouraging and contagious example of your holiness of life. There is no greater personal contribution that you can make than to heed the words of Peter and present yourselves as "examples to the flock" (1 Petr. 5, 3). To be examples to the flock means to be holy Bishops, Bishops living in union with Christ, Bishops of prayer. The whole future of your ministry and of the apostolate in Korea, the very growth of the Church, must be placed under the sign of holiness. Through union with God and in prayer you will be able to follow the words of Saint Paul: "Draw your strength from the Lord and his mighty power" (Ep 6,10).
5. In union with Christ you will ponder again what God’s word demands of the Church in Korea. With the courage that comes only with holiness you will accept the full authentic exigencies of the Second Vatican Council for your dioceses. In prayer you will review the perennial teachings of the faith and the ever relevant newness of the Church’s immutable dogmas. In vital communion with Christ, the life-giving vine, and in union with the universal Church, you will continue to preach the word of faith which depends on hearing and which enables the People of God to confess with their lips that Jesus is Lord, to believe in their hearts that God raised him from the dead, and to be saved (Cf. Rom Rm 10,9)). This faith - which is nourished in your own hearts and proclaimed with the special episcopal charism that is yours - is the source of all the insights of the faithful, who are called to believe and, in the power of the Holy Spirit, to ponder that belief and live it.
Reflection in prayer on the nature of the Church as proclaimed by the First and Second Vatican Councils, and the desire to do everything in accordance with the will of Christ for his Church, will confirm you in your commitment to collegiality and to real teamwork, especially in such major issues as inculturation, reconciliation and sharing, which are requirements of evangelization and catechesis. In union with Christ, in holiness of life, you will be able ever more effectively to promote justice for the life of the Church and for the society that the Church wishes to serve as a leaven.
6. In this hour of celebration, which is one of renewal and hope, remember the one stipulation made to Paul himself by the other Apostles: "That we should be mindful of the poor" (Ga 2,10). For you this means being a living image of Jesus in his own poverty and servant-hood. In this way you will go out to meet his poor, identify with them, and assist and evangelize them. You are called to show them compassion, to support their efforts to live decent lives, and to walk hand in hand with them down the long road of integral human development and evangelization. Love will make this possible and zeal will dictate the way. In prayer you will perceive that you must be one with the Christ who fulfills the Scriptures: "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach Good News to the poor" (Lc 4,18). Brethren, you too are anointed and sent to the poor, wherever they may be found. And in serving them, you must give them, together with your very life, the Gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
In all your efforts, dear Brothers, to live your vocation of pastoral leadership in union with Christ, I am close to you with my prayers and fraternal love. And may the prayers of Mary the Mother of Jesus and the intercession of the Martyrs of Korea support you in your Bicentennial hope to be a light to this land!
Speeches 1984 - Saturday, 28 April 1984