16 October 1998

Beloved Holy Father,

Today the whole world is resounding with celebrations to mark the twentieth anniversary of your most glorious Pontificate. We, your humble servants, know that your very presence here on earth is an unparalleled blessing for humanity. You are the living embodiment of God’s boundless Peace and fathomless Compassion.

Wisely and firmly, you have guided our hearts and souls for twenty long years. Patiently and lovingly, you have illumined us in our moments of doubt and strengthened us in our ever-lengthening days of faith. To you we owe a debt of gratitude that can never be repaid, save by the ceaseless flow of our prayerful gratitude-tears.

Holy Father, on this most auspicious occasion, my only prayer is that we may be blessed with your supremely radiant and compassionate presence among us for many more years to come.