ADDRESS OF THE HOLY FATHER PAUL VI
TO THE NEW AMBASSADOR OF TUNISIA*
Monday, 13 December 1976
We are happy to receive Your Excellency today, on this solemn occasion on which you present to us the Letters that accredit you as Ambassador of the Tunisian Republic to the Holy See. We welcome you heartily and we thank you for the kind words you have spoken in our regard.
The forthcoming celebration, on the threshold of a new year of the Day during which thoughts and desires will turn ardently to peace, must also remind everyone, and particularly men in positions of responsibility, of the necessity of acting on behalf of peace.
So it is with satisfaction that we take the present opportunity to confirm the firm intention of the Holy See to contribute incessantly and to the entire extent of its possibilities, to the establishment of a just and sincere peace all over the world, and especially, as you expressly stressed, in the Middle East. It is known how much the Holy See desires that a lasting solution of this crisis should accept in a just way the legitimate requests of all the peoples concerned, and should also comprise a peaceful definition of the Jerusalem question, so that the Holy City will become a place of understanding and brotherhood for the faithful of the three great monotheistic religions.
We appreciate, for our part, the efforts made in favour of peace by your Government, and we beg you kindly to transmit to His Excellency President Habib Bourguiba our fervent, good wishes especially for him. These wishes extend to the whole of the Tunisian people, so that Almighty God may sustain them in their march to progress and in pursuit of spiritual goods. And we have also, at this moment, a very warm thought for the local Catholic community, rejoicing in what it has already done for the country, and in what it will continue to do – need it be said?– to collaborate sincerely in its life and its advancement.
Addressing to you again, Mr Ambassador, our warm welcome, we assure you of the help of our collaborators in the exercise of your high functions. and we personally promise our support for the successful and fruitful accomplishment of your mission.
*ORa n.53 p. 6.
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