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Friday, 4 June 1976


Mr. Ambassador,

We are very happy to receive you today and to welcome in the person of Your Excellency, the first Representative of the Kingdom of Morocco to the Holy See.

By common consent, in fact, the Holy See and your country have decided to give themselves the means for permanent dialogue and a concrete and certainly fruitful collaboration by establishing diplomatic relations with each other.

There is no doubt that it is difficult to compare a political power, a State, with the Holy See. For the Catholic Church is a community of Christians, each member of which also belongs to a temporal homeland and seeks to carry out his duty as a good citizen where Providence caused him to be born. Two very different realities, certainly.

But it seems to us that, in the concert of Peoples, all those who exercise a responsibility must unite their voices to recall the lights and fundamental freedoms of the human person, to promote spiritual values and stimulate the construction of peace That is why we are very satisfied that Morocco and the Holy See have succeeded in setting up officially these ties of friendship and mutual trust. So we beg you kindly to testify to this to His Majesty King Hassan II by presenting to Him our respectful greetings and good wishes.

You recalled a moment that the Moroccan Sovereign was the Head of an important Moslem community. So we would like our good wishes to be extended through him, to all Moroccan Moslems, hens to a long spiritual tradition, our brothers in faith in the one God. In a world deeply marked by the surrounding materialism, it is of vital importance that believers dare to affirm, in their words as in their acts, the transcendence of divine Truth, which exceeds all earthly conceptions. On our side, we are sure that the Catholics resident in Morocco will continue, in faithfulness to then religious conceptions, to show how much they share this high ideal. And we rejoice at the happy prospect that opens up in this way for the future.

Moreover, we do not wish to let this opportunity pass without expressing again our deep desire and the wish to which we give expression incessantly in prayer to God regarding the Middle East that all may turn resolutely and without further delay into the road to peace; that a worthy solution may be found for the important question of Jerusalem and the Palestinian problem and that fighting will cease for good in the Lebanon, which must become once more a country which sets an example regarding the way in which Moslems and Christians can live together and collaborate.

At the moment when sour mission begins, we assure you, Mr. Ambassador, of our sympathy and of that of our collaborators. You will always be made very welcome, and you will find esteem and understanding here. May the Almighty grant you his blessings, and may He permit these new relations to develop for the good of all!

*ORa n.26 p.4.


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