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Pope highlights harmony between faith and reason in Saint Thomas Aquinas

"Much of his scholarly life would be devoted to studying the Philosopher’s authentic teaching, discerning its valid elements, and demonstrating its value for Christian thought. Thomas entered the Order of Preachers, studied under Albert the Great, and taught theology in Cologne, Paris, Rome and Naples. Among his many commentaries and systematic works, the great Summa Theologiae reveals his critical gifts and his conviction of the natural harmony between faith and reason. Thomas also composed the liturgical texts for the new feast of Corpus Domini, whose hymns reflect his deep Eucharistic faith and theological wisdom. At the end of his life, Saint Thomas stopped writing, after a mystical experience which convinced him that all he had written "was as straw", in comparison with the infinite grandeur and beauty of God’s truth. In coming catecheses we will explore the thought and writings of this great theologian.

I send my greetings to those gathered during these days in Scotland for the centennial of the first Edinburgh Missionary Conference, which is now acknowledged to have given birth to the modern ecumenical movement. May we all renew our commitment to work humbly and patiently, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, to live again together our common apostolic heritage.

I send cordial greetings to the delegates gathered in New Orleans for this year’s Catholic Media Convention.

The theme of ypur meeting, "Spreading the Good News - Byte by Byte", highlights the extraordinary potential of the new media to bring the message of Christ and the teaching of his Church to the attention of a wider public. If your mission is to be truly effective - if the words you proclaim are to touch hearts, engage people’s freedom and change their lives - you must draw them into an encounter with persons and communities who witness to the grace of Christ by their faith and their lives. In this sense, it is my hope that your days together will renew and refresh your shared enthusiasm for the Gospel. Notwithstanding the many challenges you face, never forget the promise of Christ, "I am with you always, to the close of the age" (Mt 28:20).

Dear friends, with these few words of encouragement, to all of you gathered for the Convention I am pleased to impart my Apostolic Blessing".