ADDRESS OF HIS HOLINESS POPE PAUL VI
TO THE NATO DEFENSE COLLEGE*
Saturday, 2 February 1974
Greeting you this morning, at the moment when your stay in Rome is drawing to an end, we would like, Ladies and Gentlemen, to recall briefly to your attention some of the teachings that the Eternal City may leave you.
Of the complex past of Rome, should we not recall in the first place the sense of the universal? Many peoples have contributed to its greatness. All were able, in exchange, to enjoy eventually its benefits, its order, its law, its peace were for a time the glory of the ancient world. Later, when its civilizing mission had acquired its full dimension, Rome became, more than ever, a pole of attraction. How many people continued then, thanks to their genius and to their ideals, to build up the two thousand year old city.
More deeply, in fact, Rome, the capital of the Christian world founded on the tomb of the Apostles, learns to discover true peace, the peace that comes from Christ. Already gathering men of all nations and all races, it would liker to offer an image, as it were, of the world to come: “Beata pacis visio!” Now the peace of our world, that is, its only future that is really in conformity with the human vocation, will be partly in your hands tomorrow. As we said in our recent message at the beginning of the year, peace depends on you, too. We ask the Lord to strengthen this conviction in you and to bless this will to serve, yourselves and all your dear ones.
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