Speeches 2000


Lord Jesus Christ,
in the moment of your agony
you were not indifferent to humanity’s fate,
and with your last breath
you entrusted to the Father’s mercy
the men and women of every age,
with all their weaknesses and sins.
Fill us and the generations yet to come
with your Spirit of love,
so that our indifference
will not render vain in us
the fruits of your death.
To you, crucified Jesus, the wisdom and the power of God,
be honour and glory for ever and ever.

R. Amen.


Our Father ...

Stabat Mater:

She looked upon her sweet Son,
saw him hang in desolation,
till his spirit forth he sent.


Jesus is taken down from the Cross and given to his Mother

V/. We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
R/. Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world.

O quam tristis et afflicta
Fuit illa benedicta
Mater Unigeniti.

In the arms of his Mother they have placed the lifeless body of the Son. The Gospels say nothing of what she felt at that moment.
It is as though by their silence the Evangelists wished to respect her sorrow, her feelings and her memories. Or that they simply felt incapable of expressing them.

It is only the devotion of the centuries that has preserved the figure of the “Pietà”, providing Christian memory with the most sorrowful image of the ineffable bond of love which blossomed in the Mother’s heart on the day of the Annunciation and ripened as she waited for the birth of her divine Son.

That love was revealed in the cave at Bethlehem
and was tested already during the Presentation in the Temple.
It grew deeper as Mary stored and pondered in her heart all that was happening (cf. Lk Lc 2,51).
Now this intimate bond of love must be transformed into a union which transcends the boundary between life and death.
And thus it will be across the span of the centuries:
people pause at Michelangelo’s statue of the Pietà, they kneel before the image of the loving and sorrowful Mother (Smetna Dobrodziejka) in the Church of the Franciscans in Kraków,
before the Mother of the Seven Sorrows, Patroness of Slovakia,
they venerate Our Lady of Sorrows in countless shrines in every part of the world.
And so they learn the difficult love which does not flee from suffering, but surrenders trustingly to the tenderness of God, for whom nothing is impossible (cf. Lk Lc 1,37).


Salve, Regina, Mater misericordiae;
vita dulcedo et spes nostra, salve.
Ad te clamamus...
illos tuos misericordes oculos ad nos converte
et Iesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui,
nobis post hoc exilium ostende.

Implore for us the grace of faith, hope and charity,
so that we, like you,
may stand without flinching beneath the Cross
until our last breath.
To your Son, Jesus, our Saviour,
with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
all honour and glory for ever and ever.

R. Amen.


Our Father . . .

Stabat Mater:

Let me mingle tears with you,
mourning him who mourned for me,
all the days that I may live.


Jesus is laid in the tomb

V/. We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
R/. Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

“He was crucified, died and was buried...”
The lifeless body of Christ has been laid in the tomb. But the stone of the tomb is not the final seal on his work.
The last word belongs not to falsehood, hatred and violence.
The last word will be spoken by Love, which is stronger than death.
“Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit” (Jn 12,24).
The tomb is the last stage of Christ’s dying through the whole course of his earthly life; it is the sign of his supreme sacrifice for us and for our salvation.
Very soon this tomb will become the first proclamation of praise and exaltation of the Son of God in the glory of the Father.
“He was crucified, died and was buried,. . . on the third day he rose from the dead”.
Once the lifeless body of Jesus is laid in the tomb, at the foot of Golgotha, the Church begins the vigil of Holy Saturday.
In the depths of her heart, Mary stores and ponders the Passion of her Son;
the women agree to meet on the morning of the day after the Sabbath, in order to anoint Christ’s body with aromatic ointments;
the disciples gather in the seclusion of the Upper Room, waiting for the Sabbath to pass.
This vigil will end with the meeting at the tomb, the empty tomb of the Saviour.
Then the tomb, the silent witness of the Resurrection, will speak.
The stone rolled back, the inner chamber empty, the cloths on the ground,
this will be what John sees when he comes to the tomb with Peter:

“He saw and he believed” (Jn 20,8).
And with him the Church believed,
and from that moment she never grows weary of communicating to the world this fundamental truth of her faith:
“Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep” (1Co 15,20).
The empty tomb is the sign of the definitive victory
of truth over falsehood,
of good over evil,
of mercy over sin,
of life over death.
The empty tomb is the sign of the hope which “does not deceive” (Rm 5,5).
“[Our] hope is full of immortality” (cf. Wis Sg 3,4).


Lord Jesus Christ,
by the power of the Holy Spirit,
you were drawn by the Father
from the darkness of death
to the light of a new life in glory.
Grant that the sign of the empty tomb
may speak to us and to future generations
and become a wellspring of living faith,
generous love,
and unshakeable hope.
To you, O Jesus, whose presence, hidden and victorious,
fills the history of the world,
be honour and glory for ever and ever.

R. Amen.


Our Father . . .

Stabat Mater:

While my body here decays,
may my soul your goodness praise,
safe in paradise with you. Amen.
The Holy Father addresses those present.

At the conclusion of his address the Holy Father imparts the Apostolic Blessing.

V/. The Lord be with you.
R/. And also with you.

V/. Blessed be the name of the Lord.
R/. Now and forever.

V/. Our help is in the name of the Lord.
R/. Who made heaven and earth.

V/. May Almighty God bless you,
the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
R/. Amen.




Good Friday, 21 April 2000

1. “Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” (Lc 24,26).

These words of Jesus to the two disciples on their way to Emmaus echo deep within us this evening, at the end of the Way of the Cross at the Colosseum. Like us, they had heard talk of the events surrounding the Passion and Crucifixion of Jesus. On the way back to their village, Christ draws near as an unknown pilgrim, and they hasten to tell him everything “about Jesus..., who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people” (Lc 24,19), and how the chief priests and rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death and how he was crucified (cf. Lk Lc 24,20-21). And they conclude sadly: “But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since this happened” (Lc 24,21).

“We had hoped...”. The disciples are discouraged and dejected. For us too it is difficult to understand why the way of salvation should pass through suffering and death.

2. “Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” (Lc 24,26). Let us too ask this question at the end of the traditional Stations of the Cross at the Colosseum.

Soon, from this place sanctified by the blood of the first martyrs, we shall go away, each on our own way. We shall return home, turning over in our minds the very same events which the disciples of Emmaus were discussing.

May Jesus draw near to each one of us; may he become for us too a companion on the road! As he walks with us, he will explain that it was for our sake that he went to Calvary, for us that he died, in fulfilment of the Scriptures. Thus the sorrowful event of the Crucifixion, which we have just meditated upon will become for each of us an eloquent lesson.

Dear Brothers and Sisters! The people of today need to meet Christ crucified and risen!

Who, if not the condemned Saviour, can fully understand the pain of those unjustly condemned?

Who, if not the King scorned and humiliated, can meet the expectations of the countless men and women who live without hope or dignity?

Who, if not the crucified Son of God, can know the sorrow and loneliness of so many lives shattered and without a future?

The French poet Paul Claudel wrote that the Son of God “has shown us the way out of suffering and the possibility of its transformation” (Positions et propositions). Let us open our hearts to Christ: he himself will respond to our deepest yearnings. He himself will unveil for us the mysteries of his Passion and Death on the Cross.

3. “Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him” (Lc 24,31). As Jesus speaks, the hearts of the two disconsolate travellers find a new serenity and begin to burn with joy. They recognize the Master in the breaking of bread.

Like them, may the people of today be able to recognize in the breaking of bread, in the mystery of the Eucharist, the presence of their Saviour. May they encounter him in the Sacrament of his Passover, and welcome him as their fellow traveller along the way. He will listen to them and bring them comfort. He will become their guide, leading them along the paths of life towards the Father’s house.

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you,
because by your holy Cross, you have redeemed the world!



Dear Brothers and Sisters!

1. With great joy I send you my greetings for the World Meeting of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal, which is taking place in Rimini. For several years now Renewal in the Holy Spirit has held its "national convocation" there at the beginning of May. On the occasion of the Jubilee Year, this event has acquired a particular importance because of the presence of many representatives of charismatic groups and communities from other countries of the world. Therefore, your meeting is rightly being held with the support of the International Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services, an organization whose role is to coordinate and foster a sharing of experiences and reflections among Catholic charismatic communities throughout the world. By doing so, the riches present in each community benefit everyone, and all communities can easily perceive the bond of communion that joins them to one another and to the whole Church. I cordially greet Mr Allan Panozza, President of the International Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services, and Mr Salvatore Martinez, National Coordinator of Renewal in the Holy Spirit, along with all the members of the National Service Committee.

2. This international meeting in Rimini is a stage on your Jubilee pilgrimage. In celebrating the 2,000th anniversary of the Incarnation, we are all called to turn our gaze to Christ, "the light of all nations". As we look to him, wonder and gratitude are renewed in us: the Son of God became man, died for our salvation, is risen and living.

Christ is alive! He is the Lord! This is the certainty of our faith. As we proclaim it humbly and firmly, we are aware of the fact that this certainty does not come from us. If we have been able to know Christ, it is because he has made himself known to us by giving us his Spirit: "No one can say "Jesus is Lord' except by the Holy Spirit" (1Co 12,3).

In making himself known, Christ has not left us alone. The new People of God is born in the Spirit because "he has ... willed to make men holy and save them, not as individuals without any bond or link between them, but rather to make them into a people who might acknowledge him and serve him in holiness" (Dogmatic Constitution Lumen gentium LG 9). Every authentic ecclesial community is a portion of this people who has walked the ways of the world for 2,000 years.

Every baptized person, although a member of a specific community, is therefore open to receiving the riches of the universal Church, which is the Church of all ages.

3. The Church looks with gratitude at the flourishing of lively communities in which the faith is passed on and lived. In this flourishing she recognizes the work of the Holy Spirit, who has always provided the Church with the necessary graces to face new and sometimes difficult situations.

Many of you will remember the great meeting that took place in Rome on 30 May 1998, the Vigil of Pentecost. I said at the time: "In our world, often dominated by a secularized culture which encourages and promotes models of life without God, the faith of many is sorely tested, and is frequently stifled and dies. Thus we see an urgent need for powerful proclamation and solid, in-depth Christian formation. There is so much need today for mature Christian personalities, conscious of their baptismal identity, of their vocation and mission in the Church and in the world!

There is great need for living Christian communities! And here are the movements and the new ecclesial communities: they are the response, given by the Holy Spirit, to this critical challenge at the end of the millennium" (n. 7; L'Osservatore Romano English edition, 3 June 1998, p. 2).

On that occasion I also observed that a new period for movements was unfolding, "that of ecclesial maturity" (ibid., n. 6). Today charismatic communities are also called to take this step, and I am sure that the International Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services will play an important role in developing this ecclesial awareness in the various Catholic charismatic communities throughout the world. What I said then in St Peter's Square, I repeat to all of you meeting in Rimini: "The Church expects from you the "mature' fruits of communion and commitment" (ibid.).

4. Within your communities, in different circumstances, a journey that leads to an ever greater knowledge and love of Christ has begun for each of you. Do not interrupt the journey you have begun! Have trust: Christ will complete the work that he himself has started. "Desire the higher gifts!" (1Co 12,31). Always seek Christ: seek him in meditation on the Word of God, seek him in the sacraments, seek him in prayer, seek him in the witness of your brothers and sisters. Be grateful to the priests who pastor your communities: through their ministry it is the Church who guides you and helps you as a mother and teacher. Joyfully welcome the occasions that are offered to you to deepen your Christian formation. Serve Christ in those close to you, serve him in the poor, serve him in the needs and necessities of the Church. Let yourselves be truly guided by the Spirit! Love the Church: one, holy, catholic and apostolic!

I am particularly pleased to know that representatives of other Churches and Ecclesial Communities are also taking part in your assembly, and I would like to greet them cordially.

United in common praise, you have accepted the invitation I addressed in the Bull of Indiction of the Great Jubilee: "From the different Churches and Ecclesial Communities throughout the world, let us all hasten to the feast now being prepared; let us bring with us everything that already unites us and, by fixing our gaze on Christ alone, let us grow in the unity which is the fruit of the Spirit" (Incarnationis mysterium, n. 4).

As I pray with you to the Virgin Mary, so that each one may welcome the gift of the Spirit to be a witness to Christ where he lives, I willingly impart my affectionate Blessing to you, dear brothers and sisters, and to your families.

From the Vatican, 24 April 2000.



Saturday, 29 April 2000

Dear Brothers and Sisters!

1. In the climate of spiritual joy characteristic of this Octave of Easter, I greet each of you who have come from various places and have gathered in the city of Rome to celebrate the Jubilee. Your visit today also shows the intense communion that unites you with the Successor of Peter. I thank you for your witness; I thank you in particular for the kind words addressed to me in your name by Bishop Antonio Forte of Avellino, Bishop Angelo Scola, Rector Magnificent of the Lateran University, and Mr Gianfranco Gambelli and Mr Francesco Cardile, the Presidents respectively of the National Confederation of Misericordias and the "Fratres" Association of Blood Donors.

I first greet you, dear pilgrims from the Diocese of Avellino, led by your Pastor. Welcome! As I speak to you I am thinking of the priests and the consecrated men and women who faithfully live their witness and generously carry out their ministries in the Church. I am thinking of the families, young people and Christian workers who tenaciously express their fidelity to Christ in the places where Providence has placed them. I am thinking with particular affection of the unemployed, the elderly, the sick and the poor, who await understanding and support. My words of comfort, encouragement and hope to all: raise your eyes to the Risen One and persevere with renewed zeal in the building of a society that is truly worthy of man.

Fervently continue the journey of the Holy Year and strengthen the initiatives of evangelization and charity in your Diocese. May solidarity towards one another and collaboration in building the kingdom of God be the hallmark of your Ecclesial Community, gathered around the Bishop and his priests.

May families be the temple of life and love; may parishes become open, welcoming places where prayer, mutual respect and solidarity are the style and driving force of pastoral activity. In this way the entire Diocese will become a privileged place of human and spiritual development for children and adults, for young people and the elderly.

May Mary Assumed into Heaven, the patroness of your cathedral, keep you united under her motherly mantle and grant all your good desires.

2. I now greet you, dear professors and students of the Lateran University, whom I joyfully welcome on the occasion of your Jubilee, together with your Rector Magnificent and the members of the International Lateran Association, beginning with the President, Cardinal Edmund Szoka, who wanted to hold their annual Day in conjunction with this Jubilee event. My thoughts also turn to you, dear students and teachers of the academic institutions associated in various ways with the Pontifical Lateran University and with the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family. In particular, I would like to call attention to the presence here for the first time of students from Saint Petersburg, Alba Julia and Iasi, Györ, as well as from Denver and Washington.

I would also like to mention those responsible for other academic institutions associated with the Alma Mater Lateranensis.

Today's audience is meant as an occasion for you to repay the visit I had the pleasure of making to the Pontifical Lateran University on 16 November last. I entrusted you then with the important mission of redefining the theoretical and practical horizons of the university, which is called to broaden its universal scope in this new millennium. However, the international character of your academic institution is not enough to make it a centre of new culture and civilization. It is necessary that in all the Lateran's centres you pursue unity of research, teaching and study, building up a vital community among teachers and students. It is also important to overcome every false opposition between Christian commitment and university work, through unconditional openness to the action of the Spirit of truth, who is always the Spirit of authentic unity.

In carrying out your daily work, then, do not forget the Jubilee message, which calls us to continual conversion to the risen Lord. May Mary, Mother of the Redeemer, strengthen the bonds among all of you who belong to the great Lateran family and accompany you on the path you have taken.

3. I now extend a warm welcome to you, dear members of the Italian Federation of Misericordias, together with your President, as well as to the "Fratres" Association of Blood Donors and their President. You have gathered here to celebrate your Jubilee: I meet you with great joy.

I would like to express to you my appreciation of your efforts and, especially, of your discreet and generous work. In recent years you have endeavoured to combine your traditional tasks with that of eliminating the causes of need through an active presence in the places where decisions are made concerning society, politics and social assistance. In these contexts you have sought to affirm Gospel values, the heritage inspiring your work and the irreplaceable guarantee of respect for human dignity. A particular expression of the zeal that motivates you is also your active presence in Kosovo, your commitment to building the Diocesan Missionary Centre in Taiwan, and the welcome gift of two ambulances which you have offered me today. With these generous signs of solidarity you enable the suffering to experience the providential mercy of the Lord. Continue, dear friends, in your shining tradition of good works, which spurs you to expand the horizons of your charity.

4. I extend a cordial greeting to both groups from German-speaking areas who are present at this audience: the pilgrims from the Austrian Cartel Association and a group of members of the German Bundestag. Although you come from different countries and have set yourselves different goals, you are nevertheless united by a common purpose: you wish to be the voice of Christian faith in society. May passing through the Holy Door give you the strength and courage to work as salt and leaven for the world. I impart my Apostolic Blessing to you all.

I affectionately greet the faithful from St Francis Borgia Parish in Madrid. As I thank you for your visit, I hope that the Lord will fill you with an abundance of his gifts in this Jubilee Year, in which you have had the joy of passing through the Holy Door.

5. Lastly, I greet the other groups and individual pilgrims here. A special greeting goes to the faithful of St John the Baptist Parish in Albegno di Treviolo (Bergamo), to the parish community of the Blessed Virgin Mary Mediatrix of All Graces in Favara (Agrigento), to the members of the Italian Institute of Castles, Puglia Section, to the religious and seminarians of the St Charles of Buccinigo d'Erba Institute (Como) of the Don Orione Work. I entrust all of you to Mary, Mother of the risen Christ, on Saturday, the day particularly dedicated to her, as I impart a special Apostolic Blessing to you and your families.




Saturday, 29 April 2000

Dear Brothers of Christian Instruction of St Gabriel,

I am pleased to welcome you as you meet in Rome for your General Chapter. In particular I greet Bro. René Delorme, your new Superior General, and with him all the Council members who have just been elected for their first term. I extend my warmest words of encouragement to them for their new service in the institute and in the Church. Your Chapter is a central event for you and strengthens your mission, rekindling your desire to draw from the source of your founding charism in humble yet bold fidelity to St Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort, Gabriel Deshayes and all your predecessors.

The Church rejoices to see your institute's vitality renewed, as shown by the large number of young new members on the different continents, especially in countries where evangelization has recently developed. She needs the prophetic sign of your consecration, "in order with [Christ's] Spirit to build fraternal communities, to join him in washing the feet of the poor, and to contribute in your own unique way to the transfiguration of the world" (Vita consecrata VC 110). In the eyes of the world, you show that love and forgiveness are stronger than hatred and resentment, and thus invite our contemporaries to base their personal, family and social lives on the primordial value of charity, so that peace, justice and solidarity will be sought by all in forging human bonds within society. Through your community life, in accordance with your original status as a religious institute of brothers, a status which the Church holds in high esteem, as I recalled following the Synod Fathers in my Apostolic Exhortation Vita consecrata (cf. n. 60), you witness with fidelity and enthusiasm to the Gospel, as well as to the love which profoundly unites Christ's disciples. The more intense fraternal charity is in your communities, the greater is the credibility of the message proclaimed and the more perceptible the heart of the Church, the sacrament of the union of human beings with God and with one another (cf. Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, Address to the Plenary Meeting, 20 November 1992).

The principal theme of your reflections, "Mission, Source of Life: In Montfort's Footsteps, Everyone Committed to a Just and Fraternal World", is linked to the Great Jubilee, which is leading "the whole Church into a new time of grace and mission" (Bull Incarnationis mysterium n. 3). For your institute too a new page of history is being written. It will enable you to carry out the decisions of your General Chapter. In 1997, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the canonization of St Louis-Marie de Montfort, I urged you to make fruitful the heritage you have received from your founder: it "must be laid open to so many young people who search for meaning in their lives and for an art of living" (Letter to the Montfortian Family, 21 June 1997).

Your institute is totally oriented to the education of youth. Today more than ever, this has become an essential task for the Church and for the world of tomorrow. Your vocation, in fact, is to guide young people in their spiritual, moral, human, intellectual and professional formation, and to prepare them to become adults who will take their share of responsibility at all levels in their future life. This also gives them from now on the hope that a future is open to them. By this mission you participate actively in proclaiming the Gospel and in building a just and fraternal society, since formation occurs at a deeper level in educational communities where each young person is accepted, respected and loved as he is. Living environments such as these have an incomparable educational value: they help personalities to mature by giving each person self-confidence and encouraging social integration. In the name of the Church, I thank you in particular for your role in educating society's poorest young people or children who are often rejected, the deaf, the blind, those living in slums and the streets. You are also called to eliminate illiteracy and to provide formation for many people, especially women, who have no access to educational systems. In doing so, dear brothers, you develop your educational charism with patience and tenacity in the footsteps of your founders. I appreciate the efforts you are making for human development and your concern to establish new foundations, especially in Africa and South-East Asia.

At the present time your institutions benefit from the help, competence and experience of many lay people, whom I cordially greet through you. You are working with patience and discernment to find the most suitable ways to associate them ever more effectively with your life and mission, by sharing with them your enthusiasm for educating young people and the specific features of your Montfortian charism. While respecting the baptismal vocation of each person, you offer with the laity a special example of ecclesial communion, which strengthens apostolic action for the evangelization of the world (Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, Fraternal Life in Community, n. 70).

May the joy of the Jubilee spur you to live each day by following Christ after the example of Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort! He will give you the boldness to be tireless missionaries of the Gospel in the world of education! May the Virgin Mary, so dear to your founder and to all your religious family, sustain you each day! I cordially impart to you an affectionate Apostolic Blessing, which I extend to all the Brothers of Christian Instruction of St Gabriel, the lay people who work with them, the young people who benefit from their help, their families and their former students.

May 2000




1 May 2000

1. At the close of this Jubilee gathering, I once again extend cordial greetings to you all. I thank those who have organized this important event in this place, which will host other meetings in the course of the Jubilee, especially on the occasion of World Youth Day.

My thanks go in a special way to Mr Juan Somavia, Director General of the International Labour Organization, and to Dr Paola Bignardi, National President of Italian Catholic Action, for their kind and thoughtful words to me on your behalf. I greet all the Authorities present, especially the President of the Italian Council of Ministers, Professor Giuliano Amato.

Through all of you here present, my thoughts turn in a heartfelt way to the entire world of work.

2. The festival of work brings to mind the industriousness of men and women who, in accordance with the command of the Lord of life, desire to work for a future of hope, justice and solidarity for all humanity. Today on this path of civilization, thanks to new technologies and global computerized communications, fresh possibilities of progress are emerging. However, there is no shortage of new problems, which combine with already existing ones and give rise to legitimate preoccupation. Realities such as unemployment, exploitation of minors and low wages persist, and are even getting worse in some parts of the world. It must be recognized that the organization of labour does not always respect the dignity of the human person, and the universal destination of resources is not always given due consideration.

The commitment to resolve these problems in all parts of the world involves everyone. It concerns you, owners and management, you, financiers, and you, craftsmen, tradespeople and workers. All must work so that the economic system in which we live does not upset the fundamental order of the priority of work over capital, of the common good over private interest. It is ever more necessary, as Mr Juan Somavia said a short while ago, to establish a global coalition in favour of “decent work”.

Globalization is a reality present today in every area of human life, but it is a reality which must be managed wisely. Solidarity too must become globalized.

3. The Jubilee offers a suitable opportunity to open our eyes to the poverty and marginalization, not only of individuals but also of groups and peoples. In the Bull of Indication of the Jubilee I recalled that “some nations, especially the poorer ones, are oppressed by a debt so huge that repayment is practically impossible” (Incarnationis Mysterium, 12). To reduce or indeed to remit this debt: here is a Jubilee gesture which would be so desirable!

This appeal is addressed to the rich and developed nations, but also to people of great wealth and to those who are in a position to foster solidarity among peoples.

May it ring out at this historic encounter, at which Christian workers and non-confessional labour organizations have united in a common effort.

Workers, employers, collaborators, financiers, tradespeople, join your arms, your minds, your hearts to contribute to the building of a society which respects man and his work. Man is more valuable for what he is than for what he has. Whatever is done for the sake of greater justice, wider fraternity and a more human ordering of social relationships counts for more than any progress in the technical field.

Dear Brothers and Sisters, the Pope is well aware of your problems, your concerns, your expectations and hopes. He appreciates your toil, your attachment to your families, your professional commitment. He is close to you in your efforts to build a more just and sharing society, he encourages and blesses you.

Speeches 2000