Pope John XXIII on Muintir na Tíre
Posted by shane
TO OUR BELOVED SON
CHAIRMAN OF MUINTIR NA TÍRE
In 1954 Our Predecessor of happy memory, Pius XII, was pleased to address a Letter to John M. Hayes, founder of Muintir na Tíre, referring in particular to the fact that ‘in order to promote the practice of justice and charity in each one’s immediate surroundings, Muintir na Tíre fosters a spirit of neighbourliness and self-reliance, and it inspires individuals to devote themselves to the good of the community even at a cost of personal sacrifice.’ On the occasion of the Rural Week which marks the Silver Jubilee of your Movement, We Ourselves wish to send a message of encouragement to all who co-operate in this praiseworthy work.
Your beloved founder, with his inspiring leadership, had traced the path; and since his death, his steadfast followers, faithful to his ideals, have continued and consolidated the enterprise which his generous zeal had shaped. Local communities are stimulated to identify their particular needs, to strive for the economic, social and cultural advancements of their parishes and to make effective use of public services. Encouragement and guidance have been derived from the study of the use of community organization abroad for the promotion of development, and sociological research into the problem of emigration had been inaugurated.
We have learned with pleasure that among the projects chosen for the celebration of this anniversary is the promotion of a close study of Our Encyclical Letter Mater et Magistra, in which, among other topics, We have treated of problems of agriculture and rural life, questions which are close to Our heart as well as to yours. In that Letter, We recommended the establishment of industries and services in agricultural regions ‘so that farmers can complete their income in the surroundings where they live and work.’ (1) We also pointed out the necessity of combining social action with the study of principles: ‘one learns Christian behaviour in social and economic matters by actual Christian action in those fields. (2)
You rightly emphasize that devotion to one’s native land and home should find expression in constructive action for the benefit of the actual community, and not merely in words nor in the wistful memories of exiles. As the rural areas of your country have provided people of ability and integrity to promote the religious, social and political welfare not only of your own but also of other important nations, you have a well-founded hope that the motivation of patriotism and Christian charity will mobilize similar talents and human resources for the service of local communities. Such neighbourly co-operation will contribute to the appreciation of the supernatural bonds which unite the members of the Mystical Body of Christ.
The motto which you have chosen to guide and inspire you is drawn from the psalm which We have quoted in the Encyclical Letter referred to above. May the inspired words continue to fortify and lift up your minds: ‘Truth is sprung out of the earth; and justice hath looked down from Heaven. For the Lord will give goodness; and our earth shall yield her fruit.’ As a pledge of Our paternal good-will, may the Apostolic Blessing, which We give from Our heart in the Lord, descend on you, beloved son, on the officers and members of the National Executive Committee of Muintir na Tíre, on those who participate in the forthcoming Rural Week and on all who collaborate in the work of your Movement.
From the Vatican, 24 July, 1962.
IOANNES XXIII PP.
(1) Acta Apostolicae Sedis, vol. liii, 1961, p. 435
(2) Ibid., p. 455
Posted on June 24, 2011, in Catholic Social Teaching, Economics, Emigration, Irish Church-State Relations, Irish Constitution, Irish History, John XXIII, Muintir na Tíre. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.