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President Adamkus received letters of credence from the Apostolic Nuncio

Wednesday, May 20, Vilnius - President Valdas Adamkus received letters of credence from the Apostolic Nuncio, Archbishop Luigi Bonazzi.

Speaking at the ceremony of the presentation of credentials, President Adamkus underlined that Lithuania's relations with the Holy See had always been very special. "In the difficult times of Soviet occupation, we felt your strong supporting presence. You had never recognized the annexation of Lithuania, while Lithuania's independent diplomatic representation in the Vatican was a sign of great hope for the Lithuanian nation," Mr. Adamkus said, adding that news and information from the Free World as well as faith-inspiring words of truth would reach Lithuania over Vatican Radio waves.


"The Holy See's continuing focus on Lithuania and its moral support contributed in a significant way to the spiritual growth of our state and its people over the past eighteen years. We remember well the words spoken by Pope John Paul II on the tragic morning of January 13 of 1991 and we will never forget his pastoral visit to Lithuania in 1993, which brought us all closer together, inspiring courage and hope," Mr. Adamkus said.

He stressed that the moral stand of the Holy See on the international scene was a source of inspiration for Lithuania and an example to be followed, adding that the pilgrimage of Pope Benedict XVI to the Middle East signified and promoted a diplomacy based on values.


President Adamkus noted that all of us should listen in more closely to the words of Pope Benedict XVI that the roots of the current global crisis were not only financial but also moral. "It is greatly important today to keep society close together and to promote its solidarity, respect for human dignity and moral values. We should devote particular attention to the young people who will build our future," Mr. Adamkus said. "The recent international Taizé youth meeting in Vilnius was a genuine token of hope, trust and togetherness."


"This year Lithuania celebrates the millennium of the first mention of her name in historical records. St. Bruno's mission to Lithuania in 1009 witnessed the beginning of Lithuania‘s knowledge of and road to European Christian civilization. We feel very pleased and privileged that the Holy Father has appointed his special legate for the Millennium of Lithuania celebrations. The papal legate's presence among us will once again testify the centuries-long bond between Lithuania and the Holy See," Mr. Adamkus said.

President Adamkus wished the Apostolic Nuncio the best of success in discharging the important duties of the mission entrusted to him by the Holy Father.


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