ADDRESS OF THE HOLY FATHER PAUL VI
TO THE MEMBERS OF THE UNION SAINT-JEAN BAPTISTE
FROM THE UNITED STATES
Saturday, 29 September 1973
We are very pleased to welcome today the President and members of the Union Saint-Jean-Baptiste from the United States. Your society is well known for its charitable work, especially for the contribution it has made over the last seventy-three years to Catholic education in the New England States.
The generous scholarships which you provide for students in seminaries and in Catholic colleges are a valuable aid to the work of the Church. Truly you are doing your duty both as good citizens and as good Catholics, since, as the Second Vatican Council points out, "the future of society and of the Church herself is clearly bound up with the development of young people who engage in higher studies" (Gravissimum Educationis, 10).
Your particular concern for the promotion of French culture and civilization helps also to provide that appropriate degree of cultural enrichment which all citizens must have an opportunity to acquire (Ibid. 6).
In the work which you do directly for the local churches, by defraying the expenses of construction of different parochial buildings, you are giving expression to your underlying concern to help and cooperate with your pastors, as the early Christians did in the times of the Apostles (Cfr. Phil. 4, 14 ss.). It is our prayer that the Lord will bless your endeavors with his continued assistance.
It is also our pleasure to extend a cordial greeting to a group of pilgrims from South Africa who are about to visit the Holy Land, and also to members of the Congress of the United States on their way home from Nairobi. We thank you for wishing to visit us. It is our hope that your stay in Rome will be an inspiring occasion and one that will long remain in your memories.
Upon all of you we invoke the abundant graces and blessings of Almighty God.
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