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Pope Francis Stresses Need for Politics to Serve the Common Good

Address to Delegation of the National Council of the Principality of Monaco

Pope Francis on February 2, 2019, received in audience — in the Hall of the Consistory of the Apostolic Vatican Palace — a Delegation of the National Council of the Principality of Monaco.

Here is a translation of the Pope’s address to those present at the audience.

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The Holy Father’s Address

Illustrious Ladies and Gentlemen,

I’m happy to welcome you on the occasion of the study trip you have undertaken, led by your Archbishop, for the purpose of knowing the work carried out in the Holy See, especially through meetings on subjects of your interest and in which we share a common commitment. Therefore, I thank you for this initiative and I’m happy to have the opportunity to address you.

In the Message, last January 1, for the World Day of Peace, I drew attention to the need for good politics, which is “a service to the human collectivity” in as much as “essential vehicle to build citizenship and the works of man” (n. 2). It’s the delicate mission to which I encourage you to work together, tirelessly, for the common good. May you always have at heart the promotion of a future for every citizen, in fundamental respect for the values that the dignity of persons and of every human life are, as well as in respect of the Principality’s institutions.  The latter has a long and beautiful tradition of commitment at the service of the environment, in particular, with the Albert II Foundation of Monaco. Added today is the challenge of climate warming and of its consequences, which endanger inhabitants, often in a precarious situation, of the maritime regions of our planet. On the humanitarian plane, you do much to come to the aid of all sorts of difficulties, in collaboration with the Catholic Church and other Christian Confessions, as well as with numerous NGOs. The public subsidy for development makes its contribution to different works in disadvantaged countries, in essential areas of support to families, of education, of health and of socio-economic aid. You have also implemented five pilot programs, which reflect your generosity and your capacity to intervene in face of new challenges.

It is my heartfelt hope that, beyond the concrete and necessary aid that is given, every initiative may be a leaven of hope, to generate an attitude of trust in the future and in the other, whoever he may be. Our responsibility is great, especially towards young people; may they see in us adults that give them trust and encourage their talents to enable them to commit themselves together at the service of the common good of their country and of the entire world. At a time of growing mistrust and egoism, at times even of rejection, it’s urgent to weave bonds between persons and countries, so that the joyful feeling will grow in each one of their responsibility, in as much as inhabitants of the world, as citizen and actor of the future. In this connection, the international volunteering for young diplomats and the partnership with organizations of solidarity are precious instruments. Moreover, may the Monegasques be able to lean on the founding values of the Principality, inspired by the Gospel and its message of love. These values offer them, today as yesterday, the opportunity to root the Gospel and make it fructify in their life and, in addition, express its unifying force and its perennial novelty at the service of politics, of dialogue between cultures, of justice and of fraternity.

As I reminded the Ambassadors present at the exchange of greeting last January 7, referring to the farsightedness of Pope Paul VI in his address to the United Nations, “we must get used to thinking… humanity’s coexistence in a new way, the ways of history and the destinies of the world in a new way [ . . . ] Never before as today, at a time of so much human progress, has it been necessary to appeal to man’s moral conscience! The danger doesn’t come from progress or from science… The true danger lies in man, master of ever more powerful instruments, who acts to ruin and to the highest achievements!” (New York, October 4, 1965, n. 7) So, therefore, to rethink our common destiny and to build it, we must be aware of our responsibility and undertake the way of peace with oneself, of peace with others and of peace with Creation. This is the politics of peace, which I invite you to promote, each one of you and all together in the lofty mission entrusted to you.

Dear friends, I renew my gratitude to you for this meeting and I warmly greet, through you, Prince Albert II and his family. I ask God to sustain your commitment and to reinforce the bonds that unite you at the service of the Principality and of the International Community. May He bless you abundantly, your families and all the Monegasques. Please don’t forget to pray for me. Thank you.

© Libreria Editrice Vatican

[Original text: Italian]  [ZENIT’s translation by Virginia M. Forrester]

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