From February 1st to 3rd, a delegation of the National Council, accompanied by the Archbishop of Monaco, Mgr Bernard Barsi and his Vicar General, Mgr Guillaume Paris, went to Rome and the Holy See in the framework of a study trip.
During these two days spent in Italy and the Vatican, the meetings were rich in teaching and emotion. They have enabled the national councillors to take a full measure of the evangelisation work of the Church regarding international politics as well as the discreet but important role in advising decision-makers in this world.
Paul Richard Gallagher, Secretary of State Relations, presented the functioning of international relations and the role of nuncios and answered several questions on this subject.
Mgr Bruno-Marie Duffé, secretary of the Dicastery for the service of integral human development, (the dicastery is the equivalent of a ministry) has demonstrated the political influence of this small state that is the Vatican by presenting the organisation of a dicastery and the role of its representatives in major international meetings. There followed a fascinating substantive discussion on the philosophy and role of politics, highly appreciated by the Monegasque elected representatives.
Received at the Saint-Louis des Français church by his rector, Mgr François Bousquet, the participants were able to discover the famous paintings of Caravaggio before the blessing of Candlemas candles.
The major meeting of this weekend was the audience with the Holy Father, rich in personal emotion. He responded to the message addressed to him by the Archbishop of Monaco, welcoming the role of the Principality and his Prince in his commitment to the environment. “Let us be aware of our responsibility and take the path of peace with oneself, peace with others and peace with creation,” he insisted.
The weekend ended with Mass celebrated at the tomb of St. Peter and the visit of the Vatican Basilica.